Feb 21//HUGE RISE IN PRICE OF GOLD: UP $28.40 TO $1646.10 ON DRAMATIC ESCALATION IN THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC//SILVER RISES 22 CENTS UP TO $18.56//COMEX HAS HUGE QUEUE JUMPING IN BOTH GOLD AND SILVER AS BANKERS BADLY NEED PHYSICAL METAL//DOW PLUMMETS BY 227 POINTS AND THE NASDAQ FALLS A WHOPPING 174.38 POINTS//CORONAVIRUS SPREADS TO MANY COUNTRIES//IRAN HAS ANOTHER 2 DEATHS//SOUTH KOREA BECOMES THE 2ND HOT SPOT AFTER HUBEI PROVINCE (WUHAN CITY)//IN HORRIFYING NEWS WE HAVE OUR FIRST RE INFECTION IN CHENGDU //ALASDAIR MACLEOD: A MUST READ FOR THIS WEEKEND// SWAMP STORIES FOR YOU TONIGHT//

GOLD:$1646.10 UP $28.40    (COMEX TO COMEX CLOSING

 

 

 

 

Silver:$18.56 UP 22 CENTS  (COMEX TO COMEX CLOSING)

Closing access prices:

 

GOLD: 1643.80

 

SILVER: 18.50

 

 

 

COMEX DATA

 

 

JPMorgan has been receiving gold with reckless abandon and sometimes supplying (stopping)

today RECEIVING: 0/68

EXCHANGE: COMEX
CONTRACT: FEBRUARY 2020 COMEX 100 GOLD FUTURES
SETTLEMENT: 1,616.600000000 USD
INTENT DATE: 02/20/2020 DELIVERY DATE: 02/24/2020
FIRM ORG FIRM NAME ISSUED STOPPED
____________________________________________________________________________________________
159 C ED&F MAN CAP 2
435 H SCOTIA CAPITAL 15
657 C MORGAN STANLEY 9
685 C RJ OBRIEN 4
686 C INTL FCSTONE 20
700 H UBS 8
737 C ADVANTAGE 40 8
880 C CITIGROUP 1
905 C ADM 2
991 H CME 27
____________________________________________________________________________________________

TOTAL: 68 68
MONTH TO DATE: 7,927

we are coming very close to a commercial failure!!

 

 

NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED TODAY FOR  FEB CONTRACT: 68 NOTICE(S) FOR 6800 OZ (0.2115 tonnes)

TOTAL NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED SO FAR:  7927 NOTICES FOR 792,700 OZ  (24.656 TONNES)

 

 

 

 

SILVER

 

FOR FEB

 

 

2 NOTICE(S) FILED TODAY FOR 10,000  OZ/

total number of notices filed so far this month: 288 for 1,440,000 oz

 

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Bitcoin: OPENING MORNING TRADE :  $ 9738. UP 137 

 

 

 

 

Bitcoin: FINAL EVENING TRADE: $9702 UP 113  

 

 

 

Let us have a look at the data for today

 

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

IN SILVER THE COMEX OI FELL  BY A TINY SIZED 779 CONTRACTS FROM 242,852 DOWN TO 242,073 WITH OUR SMALL 7 CENT LOSS IN SILVER PRICING AT THE COMEX.

TODAY WE ARRIVED FURTHER FROM AUGUST’S 2018  RECORD SETTING OPEN INTEREST OF 244,196 CONTRACTS.

WE HAVE ALSO WITNESSED A LARGE AMOUNT OF PHYSICAL METAL STAND FOR COMEX DELIVERY AS WELL WE ARE WITNESSING CONSIDERABLE LONGS PACKING THEIR BAGS AND MIGRATING OVER TO LONDON IN GREATER NUMBERS IN THE FORM OF EFP’S.  WE WERE  NOTIFIED  THAT WE HAD  STRONG  SIZED NUMBER OF COMEX LONGS TRANSFERRING THEIR CONTRACTS TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP:,

; FEB 0; MARCH:  579 AND MAY: 40 AND JULY: 0 ZERO FOR ALL  OTHER MONTHS  AND THEREFORE TOTAL ISSUANCE  619 CONTRACTS. WITH THE TRANSFER OF 619 CONTRACTS, WHAT THE CME IS STATING IS THAT THERE IS NO SILVER (OR GOLD) TO BE DELIVERED UPON AT THE COMEX AS THEY MUST EXPORT THEIR OBLIGATION TO LONDON. ALSO KEEP IN MIND THAT THERE CAN BE A DELAY OF 24-48 HRS IN THE ISSUING OF EFP’S. THE 619 EFP CONTRACTS TRANSLATES INTO 3.095 MILLION OZ  ACCOMPANYING:

1.THE 7 CENT LOSS IN SILVER PRICE AT THE COMEX AND

2. THE STRONG AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES WHICH STOOD FOR DELIVERY IN THE LAST 12 MONTHS:

JUNE/2018. (5.420 MILLION OZ);

FOR JULY: 30.370 MILLION OZ

FOR AUG., 6.065 MILLION OZ

FOR SEPT. 39.505 MILLION  OZ S

FOR OCT.2.525 MILLION OZ.

FOR NOV:  A HUGE 7.440 MILLION OZ STANDING  AND

21.925 MILLION OZ FINALLY STAND FOR DECEMBER.

5.845 MILLION OZ STAND IN JANUARY.

2.955 MILLION OZ STANDING FOR FEBRUARY.:

27.120 MILLION OZ STANDING IN MARCH.

3.875 MILLION OZ STANDING FOR SILVER IN APRIL.

18.845 MILLION OZ STANDING FOR SILVER IN MAY.

2.660 MILLION OZ STANDING FOR SILVER IN JUNE//

22.605 MILLION OZ  STANDING FOR JULY

10.025   MILLION OZ INITIAL STANDING IN AUGUST.

43.030   MILLION OZ INITIALLY STANDING IN SEPT. (HUGE)

7.32     MILLION OZ INITIALLY STANDING IN OCT

2.630     MILLION OZ STANDING FOR NOV.

20.970   MILLION OZ  FINAL STANDING IN DEC

5.075     MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING IN JAN

1.440    MILLION OZ INITIALLY STANDING IN FEB

 

THURSDAY, AGAIN OUR CROOKS USED COPIOUS PAPER IN ORDER TO CONTAIN SILVER’S PRICE…AND THEY WERE  UNSUCCESSFUL IN KNOCKING THE PRICE OF SILVER DOWN (IT FELL 7 CENTS).. AND, OUR OFFICIAL SECTOR/BANKERS  WERE SOMEWHAT  SUCCESSFUL IN THEIR ATTEMPT TO FLEECE  SOME SILVER LONGS AS THE TOTAL LOSS IN OI ON BOTH EXCHANGES TOTALED A TINY SIZED 160 CONTRACTS. OR 0.800 MILLION OZ…..   WE HAD NO LONG LIQUIDATION AND WE HAD NO BANKER SHORT COVERING, JUST A SMALL ACCUMULATION OF SILVER LONG CONTRACTS ENTERING BOTH EXCHANGES.

 

 

WE HAVE NOW COMMENCED IN SILVER THE ILLEGAL SPREADING OPERATION AND THAT EXPLAINS THE RISE IN COMEX OI DESPITE THE LOSS IN PRICE.  FOR NEWCOMERS, HERE ARE THE DETAILS:

 

SPREADING LIQUIDATION HAS NOW STOPPED IN GOLD AS THEY NOW BEGIN TO MORPH INTO SILVER AS WE HEAD TOWARDS THE NEW FRONT MONTH WILL BE MARCH.

 

 

FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO ARE NEW, HERE IS THE MODUS OPERANDI OF THE SPREADERS AND THE CRIMINAL ELEMENT BEHIND IT:

 

THE SPREADING LIQUIDATION OPERATION IS NOW OVER FOR GOLD..AND WE WILL NOW MORPH INTO AN ACCUMULATION PHASE OF SPREADING CONTRACTS FOR SILVER.  THEY WILL ACCUMULATE CONSIDERABLE AMOUNT OF THE CONTRACTS AND THEN LIQUIDATE ONE WEEK PRIOR TO FIRST DAY NOTICE

FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO ARE NEWCOMERS HERE IS A BRIEF SYNOPSIS OF HOW THE CROOKS FLEECE UNSUSPECTING LONGS IN THE SPREADING ENDEAVOUR;

MODUS OPERANDI OF THE CORRUPT BANKERS AS TO HOW THEY HANDLE THEIR SPREAD OPEN INTERESTS:

.

 

 

AS I HAVE MENTIONED IN PREVIOUS COMMENTARIES:

 

 

“AS YOU WILL SEE, THE CROOKS WILL NOW SWITCH TO SILVER AS THEY INCREASE THE OPEN INTEREST FOR THE SPREADERS. THE TOTAL COMEX SILVER OPEN INTEREST WILL RISE FROM NOW ON UNTIL ONE WEEK PRIOR TO FIRST DAY NOTICE AND THAT IS WHEN THEY START THEIR CRIMINAL LIQUIDATION.

HERE IS HOW THE CROOKS USED SPREADING AS WE ARE NOW INTO THE NON ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF FEB HEADING TOWARDS THE  ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF MARCH FOR SILVER:

AS I HAVE MENTIONED IN PREVIOUS COMMENTARIES, HERE IS THE BANKERS MODUS OPERANDI:

YOU WILL ALSO NOTICE THAT THE COMEX OPEN INTEREST  STARTS TO RISE IN THIS NON  ACTIVE MONTH OF FEB .BUT SO IS THE OPEN INTEREST OF SPREADERS. THE OPEN INTEREST IN SILVER WILL CONTINUE TO RISE UNTIL ONE WEEK BEFORE FIRST DAY NOTICE OF AN UPCOMING  ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH (MAR), AND THAT IS WHEN THE CROOKS SELL THEIR SPREAD POSITIONS BUT NOT AT THE SAME TIME OF THE DAY.  THEY WILL USE THE SELL SIDE OF THE EQUATION TO CREATE THE CASCADE (ALONG WITH THEIR COLLUSIVE FRIENDS) AND THEN COVER ON THE BUY SIDE OF THE SPREAD SITUATION AT THE END  OF THE DAY. THEY DO THIS TO AVOID POSITION LIMIT DETECTION. THE LIQUIDATION OF THE SPREADING FORMATION CONTINUES FOR EXACTLY ONE WEEK AND ENDS ON FIRST DAY NOTICE.”

 

 

 

ACCUMULATION FOR EFP’S/SILVER/J.P.MORGAN’S HOUSE OF BRIBES, / STARTING FROM FIRST DAY NOTICE/FOR MONTH OF FEB:

19,580 CONTRACTS (FOR 14 TRADING DAYS TOTAL 19,580 CONTRACTS) OR 97.900 MILLION OZ: (AVERAGE PER DAY: 1398 CONTRACTS OR 6.992 MILLION OZ/DAY)

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE HUGE SUPPLY THIS MONTH IN SILVER:  SO FAR THIS MONTH OF FEB: 97.900 MILLION PAPER OZ HAVE MORPHED OVER TO LONDON. THIS REPRESENTS AROUND 13.98% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION (EX CHINA EX RUSSIA)*  JUNE’S 345.43 MILLION OZ IS THE SECOND HIGHEST RECORDED ISSUANCE OF EFP’S AND IT FOLLOWED THE RECORD SET IN APRIL 2018 OF 385.75 MILLION OZ.

 

ACCUMULATION IN YEAR 2020 TO DATE SILVER EFP’S:          279.51 MILLION OZ.

JANUARY 2020 EFP TOTALS SO FAR: 181.61 MILLION OZ

FEB 2020 EFP’S TOTAL SO FAR:  ……     97.900 MILLION OZ

 

 

RESULT: WE HAD A SMALL SIZED DECREASE IN COMEX OI SILVER COMEX CONTRACTS OF 779, WITH THE SMALL 7 CENT FALL IN SILVER PRICING AT THE COMEX /THURSDAY… THE CME NOTIFIED US THAT WE HAD A  GOOD SIZED EFP ISSUANCE OF 619 CONTRACTS WHICH EXITED OUT OF THE SILVER COMEX AND TRANSFERRED THEIR OI TO LONDON  AS FORWARDS. SPECULATORS CONTINUED THEIR INTEREST IN ATTACKING THE SILVER COMEX FOR PHYSICAL SILVER

 

TODAY WE LOST A TINY SIZED  SIZED:  160 TOTAL OI CONTRACTS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: (WITH THE 7 CENT LOSS IN PRICE)

i.e 661 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS HEADED FOR LONDON  (EFP’s) TOGETHER WITH DECREASE OF 779 OI COMEX CONTRACTS.AND ALL OF THIS DEMAND HAPPENED WITH A SMALL 7 CENT LOSS IN PRICE OF SILVER/ AND A CLOSING PRICE OF $18.34 // THURSDAY’S TRADING. YET WE STILL HAVE A STRONG AMOUNT OF SILVER STANDING AT THE COMEX FOR DELIVERY!! 

 

In ounces AT THE COMEX, the OI is still represented by JUST OVER 1 BILLION oz i.e. 1.217 BILLION OZ TO BE EXACT or 173% of annual global silver production (ex Russia & ex China).

FOR THE NEW  FEB DELIVERY MONTH/ THEY FILED AT THE COMEX: 2 NOTICE(S) FOR  10,000 OZ OF SILVER.

IN SILVER,PRIOR TO TODAY, WE  SET THE NEW COMEX RECORD OF OPEN INTEREST AT 244,196 CONTRACTS ON AUG 22.2018. AND AGAIN THIS HAS BEEN SET WITH A LOW PRICE OF $14.70

 

.

 

ON THE DEMAND SIDE WE HAVE THE FOLLOWING:

  1. HUGE AMOUNTS OF SILVER STANDING FOR DELIVERY  (MARCH/2018: 27 MILLION OZ , APRIL/2018 : 2.485 MILLION OZ  MAY: 36.285 MILLION OZ ; JUNE/2018  (5.420 MILLION OZ) , JULY 2018 FINAL AMOUNT STANDING: 30.370 MILLION OZ   )  FOR AUGUST 6.065 MILLION OZ. , SEPT:  A HUGE 39.505 MILLION OZ./ OCTOBER: 2,520,000 oz  NOV AT 7.440 MILLION OZ./ DEC. AT 21.925 MILLION OZ   JANUARY AT  5.825 MILLION OZ.AND FEB 2019:  2.955 MILLION OZ/ MARCH: 27.120 MILLION OZ/  APRIL AT 3.875 MILLION OZ/ A MAY:  18.845 MILLION OZ ..JUNE 2.660 MILLION OZ//JULY 22.605 MILLION OZ; AUGUST 10.025 MILLION OZ/ SEPT 43.030 MILLION OZ//OCT: 7.665 MILLION OZ//   NOV: 2.630 MILLION OZ//DEC:  20.970 MILLION OZ; JAN:  5.075 MILLION OZ.//FEB 1.440 MILLION OZ//
  2. THE  RECORD WAS SET IN AUGUST 22/2018:  244,196 CONTRACTS,  WITH A SILVER PRICE OF $14.78//.
  3. HUGE ANNUAL EFP’S ISSUANCE EQUAL TO 2.9 BILLION OZ OR 400% OF SILVER ANNUAL PRODUCTION/2017 RECORD SETTING EFP ISSUANCE FOR ANY MONTH IN SILVER; APRIL/2018/ 385.75 MILLION OZ/  AND THE SECOND HIGHEST RECORDED EFP ISSUANCE JUNE 2018 345.43 MILLION OZ

 

AND YET, WITH THE EXTREMELY HIGH EFP ISSUANCE, WE HAVE A CONTINUAL LOW PRICE OF SILVER DESPITE THE ABOVE HUGE DEMAND.  TO ME THE ONLY ANSWER IS THAT WE HAVE SOVEREIGN  (CHINA) WHO IS ENDEAVOURING TO GOBBLE UP ALL AVAILABLE PHYSICAL SILVER NO MATTER WHERE, EXACTLY WHAT J.P.MORGAN IS DOING. AND IT IS MY BELIEF THAT J.P.MORGAN IS HOLDING ITS SILVER FOR ITS BENEFICIAL OWNER..THE USA GOVERNMENT WHO IN TURN IS HOLDING THAT SILVER FOR CHINA.(FOR A SILVER LOAN REPAYMENT)

 

GOLD

 

IN GOLD, THE COMEX OPEN INTEREST ROSE BY A VERY STRONG SIZED 7651 CONTRACTS TO 730,334 AND MOVING MUCH CLOSER TO  OUR  NEW RECORD (SET JAN 24/2020) AT 799,541 AND  PREVIOUS TO THAT: (SET JAN 6/2020) AT 797,110.

THE STRONG GAIN IN COMEX OI OCCURRED WITH OUR STRONG ADVANCE OF $9.00 IN PRICING /// COMEX GOLD TRADING// THURSDAY// WE, FOR SURE HAD NO BANKER SHORT COVERING AND NO LONG LIQUIDATION.  TOGETHER WITH THE STRONG ISSUANCE OF EFP’S OUR BANKER FRIENDS BASICALLY COULD NOT FLEECE ANY LONGS FROM ANY GOLD ARENA AND THUS OUR VERY STRONG GAIN IN OUR TWO EXCHANGES!  

 

 

E.F.P. ISSUANCE

 

 

 

THE CME RELEASED THE DATA FOR EFP ISSUANCAND IT TOTALED A VERY STRONG SIZED 9997 CONTRACTS:

CONTRACTS, FEB>  0 CONTRACTS; MARCH 00 APRIL: 9997; JUNE. 0 AND ALL OTHER MONTHS ZERO//TOTAL: 9997.  The NEW COMEX OI for the gold complex rests at 730,334,.  ALSO REMEMBER THAT THERE WILL BE A DELAY IN THE ISSUANCE OF EFP’S.  THE BANKERS REMOVE LONG POSITIONS OF COMEX GOLD IMMEDIATELY.  THEN THEY ORCHESTRATE THEIR PRIVATE EFP DEAL WITH THE LONGS AND THAT COULD TAKE AN ADDITIONAL, 48 HRS SO WE GENERALLY DO NOT GET A MATCH WITH RESPECT TO DEPARTING COMEX LONGS AND NEW EFP LONG TRANSFERS. . EVEN THOUGH THE BANKERS ISSUED THESE MONSTROUS EFPS, THE OBLIGATION STILL RESTS WITH THE BANKERS TO SUPPLY METAL BUT IT TRANSFERS THE RISK TO A LONDON BANKER OBLIGATION AND NOT A NEW YORK COMEX OBLIGATION. LONGS RECEIVE A FIAT BONUS TOGETHER WITH A LONG LONDON FORWARD. THUS, BY THESE ACTIONS, THE BANKERS AT THE COMEX HAVE JUST STATED THAT THEY HAVE NO APPRECIABLE METAL!! THIS IS A MASSIVE FRAUD: THEY CANNOT SUPPLY ANY METAL TO OUR COMEX LONGS BUT THEY ARE QUITE WILLING TO SUPPLY MASSIVE NON BACKED GOLD (AND SILVER) PAPER KNOWING THAT THEY HAVE NO METAL TO SATISFY OUR LONGS. LONDON IS NOW SEVERELY BACKWARD IN BOTH GOLD AND SILVER  AND WE ARE WITNESSING DELAYS IN ACTUAL DELIVERIES.

IN ESSENCE WE HAVE A VERY STRONG SIZED GAIN IN TOTAL CONTRACTS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES OF 17,648 CONTRACTS: 7651 CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX  AND 9997 EFP OI CONTRACTS WHICH NAVIGATED OVER TO LONDON. THUS  TOTAL OI GAIN OF 17,648 CONTRACTS OR 1,764,800 OZ OR 54.89 TONNES. WEDNESDAY, WE HAD A STRONG GAIN OF $9.00 IN GOLD TRADING……

AND WITH THAT GAIN IN  PRICE, WE  HAD A VERY STRONG GAIN IN GOLD TONNAGE OF 54.89  TONNES!!!!!! THE BANKERS/OFFICIAL SECTOR WERE SUPPLYING INFINITE SUPPLIES OF SHORT GOLD COMEX PAPER WITH RECKLESS ABANDON. THE BANKERS WERE UNSUCCESSFUL IN THEIR ATTEMPT TO LOWER GOLD’S PRICE (GAIN $9.00). AND IT SEEMS THAT THEIR ATTEMPT TO FLEECE  GOLD LONGS FROM THE GOLD ARENA FAILED AGAIN AS WE HAD  A STRONG INCREASE IN EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS  (9997) ACCOMPANYING THE STRONG GAIN IN COMEX OI.(7,651):  TOTAL GAIN IN THE TWO EXCHANGES:  17,648 CONTRACTS

 

ACCUMULATION OF EFP’S GOLD AT J.P. MORGAN’S HOUSE OF BRIBES: (EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL) FOR THE MONTH OF FEB : 125,113 CONTRACTS OR 12,511,300 oz OR 389.15 TONNES (14 TRADING DAYS AND THUS AVERAGING: 8858 EFP CONTRACTS PER TRADING DAY

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE STRONG SIZE OF THESE EFP TRANSFERS :  THIS MONTH IN 14 TRADING DAY(S) IN  TONNES: 389.15 TONNES

TOTAL ANNUAL GOLD PRODUCTION, 2018, THROUGHOUT THE WORLD EX CHINA EX RUSSIA: 3555 TONNES

THUS EFP TRANSFERS REPRESENTS 389.15/3550 x 100% TONNES =10.96% OF GLOBAL ANNUAL PRODUCTION

ISSUANCE OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL /GOLD HAS EXPLODED THIS MONTH.

 

 

ACCUMULATION OF GOLD EFP’S YEAR 2020 TO DATE:    959.34  TONNES

JANUARY 2220 TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE; SO FAR: 570.19 TONNES

FEB 2020 TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE SO FAR:            389.15  TONNES

 

 

 

 

WHAT IS ALARMING TO ME, ACCORDING TO OUR LONDON EXPERT ANDREW MAGUIRE IS THAT THESE EFP’S ARE BEING TRANSFERRED TO WHAT ARE CALLED SERIAL FORWARD CONTRACT OBLIGATIONS AND THESE CONTRACTS ARE LESS THAN 14 DAYS.  ANYTHING GREATER THAN 14 DAYS, THESE MUST BE RECORDED AND SENT TO THE COMPTROLLER, GREAT BRITAIN TO MONITOR RISK TO THE BANKING SYSTEM.  IF THIS IS INDEED TRUE, THEN THIS IS A MASSIVE CONSPIRACY TO DEFRAUD AS WE NOW WITNESS A MONSTROUS TOTAL EFP’S ISSUANCE AS IT HEADS INTO THE STRATOSPHERE

 

Result: A STRONG SIZED INCREASE IN OI AT THE COMEX OF 7651 WITH THE STRONG  PRICING GAIN THAT GOLD UNDERTOOK THURSDAY($9.00)) //.WE ALSO HAD A  STRONG SIZED NUMBER OF COMEX LONG TRANSFERRING TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE: 9997 CONTRACTS AS THESE HAVE ALREADY BEEN NEGOTIATED AND CONFIRMED.   THERE OBVIOUSLY DOES NOT SEEM TO BE MUCH PHYSICAL GOLD AT THE COMEX.  I GUESS IT EXPLAINS THE HUGE ISSUANCE OF EFP’S…THERE IS HARDLY ANY GOLD PRESENT AT TH GOLD COMEX FOR DELIVERY PURPOSES. IF YOU TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE 9997 EFP CONTRACTS ISSUED, WE  HAD A VERY STRONG SIZED GAIN OF 17,648 CONTRACTS IN TOTAL OPEN INTEREST  ON THE TWO EXCHANGES:

9997 CONTRACTS MOVE TO LONDON AND  7651 CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX. (IN TONNES, THE GAIN IN TOTAL OI EQUATES TO 54.89 TONNES). AND THIS INCREASE OF DEMAND OCCURRED WITH THE GAIN IN PRICE OF $9.00 WITH RESPECT TO THURSDAY’S TRADING/// AT THE COMEX.

 

With respect to our two criminal funds, the GLD and the SLV:

GLD...

 

 

WITH GOLD UP $28.60  TODAY

A BIG CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//

 

A HUGE GAIN IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD:

 

A DEPOSIT OF 2.34 TONNES OF GOLD

 

 

FEB 21/2020/Inventory rests tonight at 933.64 tonnes

 

 

 

 

 

SLV/

 

 

WITH SILVER UP 22 CENTS TODAY

NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV

 

FEB 21/INVENTORY RESTS AT 363.433 MILLION OZ.

 

 

 

TO ALL INVESTORS THINKING OF BUYING GOLD THROUGH THE GLD ROUTE: YOU ARE MAKING A TERRIBLE MISTAKE AS THE CROOKS ARE USING WHATEVER GOLD COMES IN TO ATTACK BY SELLING THAT GOLD.  IT SURE SEEMS TO ME THAT THE GOLD OBLIGATIONS AT THE GLD EXCEED THEIR INVENTORY

 

 

end

 

OUTLINE OF TOPICS TONIGHT

First, here is an outline of what will be discussed tonight:

1.Today, we had the open interest in SILVER FELL BY A TINY SIZED 779 CONTRACTS FROM 242,852 DOWN TO 242,073 AND MUCH CLOSER TO  OUR NEW COMEX RECORD.  THE LAST RECORDS WERE SET  IN AUG.2018 AT 244,196 WITH A SILVER PRICE OF $14.78/(AUGUST 22/2018)..THE PREVIOUS RECORD TO THAT WAS SET ON APRIL 9/2018 AT 243,411 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS WITH THE SILVER PRICE AT THAT DAY: $16.53). AND PREVIOUS TO THAT, THE RECORD  WAS ESTABLISHED AT: 234,787 CONTRACTS, SET ON APRIL 21.2017 OVER  2 3/4 YEARS AGO.  THE PRICE OF SILVER ON THAT DAY: $17.89.

EFP ISSUANCE 119

OUR CUSTOMARY MIGRATION OF COMEX LONGS CONTINUE TO MORPH INTO LONDON FORWARDS  AS OUR BANKERS USED THEIR EMERGENCY PROCEDURE TO ISSUE:

 FOR FEB. 0; FOR MAR  579:  AND MAY: 40; JULY: 0 CONTRACTS   AND ALL OTHER MONTHS: ZERO. TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE: 661 CONTRACTS. EFP’S GIVE OUR COMEX LONGS A FIAT BONUS PLUS A DELIVERABLE PRODUCT OVER IN LONDON.  IF WE TAKE THE OI LOSS AT THE COMEX OF 779 CONTRACTS TO THE 661 OI TRANSFERRED TO LONDON THROUGH EFP’S,  WE OBTAIN A SMALL LOSS OF 160 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS. THUS IN OUNCES, THE LOSS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: 0.80 MILLION OZ!!! AND YET WE ALSO HAVE A STRONG DEMAND FOR PHYSICAL AS WE WITNESSED A FINAL STANDING OF GREATER THAN 30 MILLION OZ FOR JULY, A STRONG 7.475 MILLION OZ FOR AUGUST..  A HUGE 39.505  MILLION OZ  STANDING FOR SILVER IN SEPTEMBER… OVER 2 million  OZ STANDING FOR THE NON ACTIVE MONTH OF OCTOBER.,  7.440 MILLION OZ FINALLY STANDING IN NOVEMBER.  21.925 MILLION OZ STANDING IN DECEMBER , 5.845 MILLION OZ STANDING IN JANUARY. 2.955 MILLION OZ STANDING IN FEBRUARY,  27.120 MILLION OZ FOR MARCH., 3.875 MILLION OZ FOR APRIL  18.765 MILLION OZ FOR MAY  NOW 2.660 MILLION OZ FOR JUNE WITH JULY AT 22.605 MILLION OZ AUGUST AT 10.025 MILLION OZ//  SEPT: 43.030 MILLION OZ///OCT: 7.32 MILLION OZ//NOV 2.63 MILLION OZ//DEC: 20.970 MILLION OZ//JAN: 5.075 MILLION OZ//FEB: 1.440 MILLION OZ//

 

 

RESULT: A SMALL SIZED DECREASE IN SILVER OI AT THE COMEX WITH THE SMALL 7 CENT RISE IN PRICING THAT SILVER UNDERTOOK IN PRICING// THURSDAY. WE ALSO HAD A STRONG SIZED 661 EFP’S ISSUED TRANSFERRING COMEX LONGS OVER TO LONDON. TOGETHER WITH THE STRONG  SIZED AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES STANDING FOR THIS MONTH, DEMAND FOR PHYSICAL SILVER CONTINUES TO INTENSIFY AS WE WITNESS SEVERE BACKWARDATION IN SILVER IN LONDON.

BOTH THE SILVER COMEX AND THE GOLD COMEX ARE IN STRESS AS THE BANKERS SCOUR THE BOWELS OF THE EXCHANGE FOR METAL

 

 

 

 

 

(report Harvey)

 

2 ) Gold/silver trading overnight Europe, Goldcore

(Mark O’Byrne/zerohedge

and in NY: Bloomberg

3. ASIAN AFFAIRS

I)FRIDAY MORNING/ THURSDAY NIGHT: 

SHANGHAI CLOSED UP 9.52 POINTS OR 1.04%  //Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 300.35 POINTS OR 1.09%   /The Nikkei closed DOWN 92.41 POINTS OR 0.39%//Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED DOWN .434%

/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed DOWN  at 7.0316 /Oil UP TO 57.21 dollars per barrel for WTI and 64.13 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED MIXED//  ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN // LAST AT 7.0316 AGAINST THE DOLLAR. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN ON THE DOLLAR AT 7.0429 TRADE TALKS STALL//YUAN LEVELS GETTING DANGEROUSLY PAST 7:1//TRUMP INITIATES A NEW 25% TARIFFS FRIDAY/MAY 10/MAJOR PROBLEMS AT HUAWEI /CFO ARRESTED//CORONAVIRUS  : /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING ABOVE LEVEL OF OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFFSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST THE DOLLAR /TRADE DEAL PART I COMPLETE//STARTING PART II..TRUMP  RAISED RATES TO 25%

3A//NORTH KOREA/ SOUTH KOREA

i)SOUTH KOREA/CORONAVIRUS UPDATE//THURSDAY NIGHT

Big important news last night:  South Korean Covid 19 cases explode after a super spreader event.  A South Korean went to 4 church services knowing she had a cold and wanted divine intervention to cure her.  This caused a massive explosion in South Korean cases

(zerohedge)

ii)SOUTH KOREA/CHINA/LEBANON//IRAN CORONAVIRUS UPDATE//FRIDAY MORNING

As described above South korea cases jump to 204 due to a super spreader.  Also the Chinese prison system explodes in cases as now almost 500 infected. Lebanon records its first case and more alarming we see that Iran now has 4 deaths in Qom.  None of the deaths had the individuals having any contact with Chinese citizens.  Thus they caught the coronavirus airborne.  This is a deadly virus.we must stay away from anyone in close quarters like church events  trains and planes.
.(zerohedge)

3b) REPORT ON JAPAN

3C  CHINA

i)CHINA/PMI DEVASTATING!!

This is devastating: one major bank expects China’s PMI to drop  to 30 or below.  Remember than below 50 is contraction of an economy.  A level of 30 is depression!

(zerohedge)

ii)CHINA/AUTO SALES

This ought to shake up an economy:  Chinese auto sales plunge by a whopping 92%
(Mish Shedlock/Mishtalk)

iii)CHINA //CORONAVIRUS///DRONES

China desperately tries to fight the virus outbreak using drones, robots and spray
(zerohedge)

iv)CHINA/GLOBE/CORONAVIRUS

horrifying news:
FIRST, I told you that the virus can mutate 3 times and thus it is possible that you could be re infected
That has borne out to be true as a Chengdu patient cured earlier on has been reinfected.
SECOND:  and this is really really scary:  the virus can remain dormant or latent for 42 days before showing damaging effects.
So our patient from Chengdu may not have been cured but had the virus dormant in his body or, he was re infected.
THIRD: THIS IS VERY VERY SCARY!!

4/EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

UK/SHARIA LAW

Interesting:  the high court in England has ruled that Sharia marriages are void under English law

(Kern/Gatestone)

5. RUSSIAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN AFFAIRS

i)LEBANON/CLOSE TO DEFAULT

Lebanon is now close to bankruptcy.  They must severe all relations with Hezbollah to survive as a nation

(zerohedge)

ii)SAUDI ARABIA/IRAN/YEMEN

Iranian backed Houthi’s fire sophisticated missile at Saudi Arabia Aramco facility.  Defense systems knocked the  missile out of the sky
(zerohedge)

iii)LIBYA/USAUSA ambassador on its first visit to Libya meets Hafter in Benghazi and does not go to Tripoli.  The USA is backing Hafter

(zerohedge)

6.Global Issues

i)AUSTRALIA//THE GLOBE

We continue to see global crop failures.  Australia is going to have its worst harvest ever recorded

(Michael Snyder)

ii)DIAMOND INDUSTRY/DE BEERS
We now witness the diamond industry in trouble as demand falls off a cliff
(zerohedge)

iii)CORONAVIRUS/CHARACTERISTICS

A MUST READ...
(Gail Tverberg/Our Finite World)

7. OIL ISSUES

 

8 EMERGING MARKET ISSUES

ARGENTINA/CREDITORS/IMF/DEFAULT

Bondholders are going to take a huge hit on this one.  Serve them right for investing in this garbage

(London’s Financial Times)

and special thanks to Robert H for sending this to us

9. PHYSICAL MARKETS

A  must must read:  will the coronavirus lead to a gold standard ..find out

Alasdair Macleod…

10. important USA stories which will influence the price of gold/silver

MARKET TRADING//USA

a)Market trading/LAST NIGHT/USA

 

b)MARKET TRADING/USA/AFTERNOON

ii)Market data/USA

i)THIS IS HUGE: Treasury yields plunge as the USA PMI collapses into contraction.  This is before the big onset on the Covid 19 supply shock

(zerohedge)

ii)Existing home sales slide in January with prices jumping

(zerohedge)

iii) Important USA Economic Stories

a)This will be a big hit for USA taxpayers and it will also add to the total USA debt as authorities plan on a 200 billion student loan forgiveness

(zerohedge)

b)We have been highlighting this to you for the past few months:  the Covid 19 virus will have an immediate impact from supply chain shock.  Deutsche bank outlines how this will be devastating to the USA economy

(zerohedge)

iv) Swamp commentaries)

v) King report/Courtesy of Chris Powell of GATA which includes the major swamp stories.

 

LET US BEGIN:

 

 

Let us head over to the comex:

THE TOTAL COMEX GOLD OPEN INTEREST ROSE BY A VERY STRONG SIZED 7651 CONTRACTS TO 730,334 MOVING MUCH CLOSER  TO OUR  RECORD THAT WAS SET IN JANUARY/2020: {799,541  OI(SET JAN 16/2020)} AND  PREVIOUS TO THAT: 797,110 (SET JAN 7/2020).  AND THIS GAIN IN OI WAS SET WITH A STRONG GAIN OF 9.00 IN GOLD PRICING //THURSDAY’S  COMEX TRADING//). ALSO WE HAD  ANOTHER STRONG EFP ISSUANCE, SO WE HAD ANOTHER FAILED ATTEMPT AT BANKER SHORT COVERING ……AS OUR TWO EXCHANGES ROSE HUGELY IN OPEN INTEREST..

 

 

WE ARE NOW IN THE  NON ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF FEB..  THE CME REPORTS THAT THE BANKERS ISSUED A VERY STRONG SIZED  TRANSFER THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE AS THESE LONGS RECEIVED A DELIVERABLE LONDON FORWARD TOGETHER WITH A FIAT BONUS., THAT IS 9997 EFP CONTRACTS WERE ISSUED:

  FEB: 0; MARCH 00 AND APRIL: 9997,  JUNE : 0 AND  ZERO FOR ALL OTHER MONTHS:

TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE: 9997CONTRACTS.

THE OBLIGATION STILL RESTS WITH THE BANKERS ON THESE TRANSFERS. ALSO REMEMBER THAT THERE IS NO DOUBT A HUGE DELAY IN THE ISSUANCE OF EFP’S AND IT PROBABLY TAKES AT LEAST  48 HRS AFTER OUR LONGS GIVE UP THEIR COMEX CONTRACTS FOR THEM TO RECEIVE THEIR EFP’S AS THEY ARE NEGOTIATING THIS CONTRACT WITH THE BANKS FOR A FIAT BONUS PLUS THEIR TRANSFER TO A LONDON BASED FORWARD.

ON A NET BASIS IN OPEN INTEREST WE GAINED THE FOLLOWING TODAY ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES: A HUGE SIZED 17,648 TOTAL CONTRACTS IN THAT 9997 LONGS WERE TRANSFERRED AS FORWARDS TO LONDON AND WE GAINED A VERY STRONG SIZED 7651 COMEX CONTRACTS.  THE BANKERS PROVIDED ALL THE NECESSARY SHORT PAPER TO WHICH OUR LONGS DUTIFULLY ACCEPTED AS THEY GOBBLED UP ATMOSPHERIC AMOUNTS OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS AND COMEX OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS. 

 

THE BANKERS WERUNSUCCESSFUL IN LOWERING GOLD’S PRICE //// (IT ROSE BY $9.00). AND THEY WERE MOST DEFINITELY  UNSUCCESSFUL IN FLEECING ANY LONGS, AS THE TOTAL ON THE TWO EXCHANGES ROSE BY A HUGE  SIZED 17,648 CONTRACTS ….(54.89TONNES)

 

NET GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES ::  17,648 CONTRACTS OR 1,764,800 OZ OR 54.89 TONNES

 

COMMODITY LAW SUGGESTS THAT COMMODITY FUTURES OPEN INTEREST SHOULD APPROXIMATE 3% OF TOTAL PRODUCTION.  IN GOLD THE WORLD PRODUCES AROUND 3500 TONNES PER YEAR BUT ONLY 2200 TONNES ARE AVAILABLE FROM THE WEST (THUS EXCLUDING RUSSIA, CHINA ETC..WHO KEEP 100% OF THEIR PRODUCTION)

THUS IN GOLD WE HAVE THE FOLLOWING:  730,334 TOTAL OI CONTRACTS X 100 OZ PER CONTRACT = 73.03 MILLION OZ/32,150 OZ PER TONNE =  2,274 TONNES

THE COMEX OPEN INTEREST REPRESENTS 2,274/2200 OR 103.39% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION OF GOLD.

 

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

And now for the wild silver comex results

Total COMEX silver OI FELL BY A TINY SIZED 779 CONTRACTS FROM 242,852 DOWN TO 242,073 (AND STILL CLOSE TO THE NEW RECORD OI FOR SILVER SET ON AUGUST 22.2018 (244,196).  THE PREVIOUS RECORD WAS SET APRIL 9.2018/ 243,411 CONTRACTS) AND OUR HUGE  OI COMEX GAIN OCCURRED WITH OUR SMALL 7 CENT DECREASE IN PRICING/THURSDAY. HOWEVER WE MUST BE COGNIZANT THAT A GOOD NUMBER OF COMEX OI ARE SPREADERS.

 

WE ARE NOW INTO THE  NON-ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF FEB.

FEB IS A NON ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH.

 

THE FRONT MONTH OF FEBRUARY HAS A TOTAL OPEN INTEREST OF 2 CONTRACTS SHOWING A LOSS OF 50 CONTRACTS//THURSDAY TRADING. WE HAD 52 NOTICES SERVED YESTERDAY SO WE GAINED 2 CONTRACT OR 10,000 OZ OF SILVER WILL STAND AT THE COMEX AS THEY REFUSED TO  MORPH INTO LONDON BASED FORWARDS AND AS SUCH THEY NEGATED A FIAT BONUS

 

 

March is a very active month and here we witness a LOSS of 16,576 contracts  DOWN TO 87,615

APRIL saw a gain of 247 contracts up to 801.

MAY had a good 13,486 gain in oi to stand at 108,250.

 

 

 

We, today, had  2 notice(s)  for 10,000, OZ for the FEB, 2019 COMEX contract for silver

Fear trade news…

A few days ago:

HSBC to shed 35,000 jobs in radical move to downsize

Lender’s overhaul to shrink investment bank with reductions in Europe and US

(HSBC is the custodian of the gold ETF)

Trading Volumes on the COMEX TODAY: 471,103 contracts..volume extremely high

 

 

 

 

 

 

CONFIRMED COMEX VOL. FOR YESTERDAY:  427,127 contracts//high volume

 

 

 

INITIAL standings for  FEB/GOLD

 

 

 

Let us head over to the comex:

 

 

FEB 21/2020

 

Gold Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory in oz nil oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory in oz
45,264.687 oz
HSBC
Deposits to the Dealer Inventory in oz NIL oz

 

 

 

 

 

Deposits to the Customer Inventory, in oz  

nil

 

No of oz served (contracts) today
68 notice(s)
 6800 OZ
(0.2115 TONNES)
No of oz to be served (notices)
302 contracts
(30200 oz)
0.9393 TONNES
Total monthly oz gold served (contracts) so far this month
7927 notices
792700 OZ
24.656 TONNES
Total accumulative withdrawals of gold from the Dealers inventory this month NIL oz
Total accumulative withdrawal of gold from the Customer inventory this month xxx oz

we had 0 dealer entry:

We had  0 kilobar entries

 

 

 

total dealer deposits:nil oz

total dealer withdrawals: nil oz

 

we had 0 deposit into the customer account

i) Into JPMorgan: nil  oz

 

ii) Into everybody else  nil

oz

 

 

 

 

 

 

total deposits:  nil  oz

 

 

we had 1 gold withdrawals from the customer account:

i) Out of HSBC: 45,244.687 OZ

total gold withdrawals;  45,244.687  oz

 

ADJUSTMENTS:  1

OUT OF HSBC:

33,580.832 oz was adjusted out of the dealer and this landed into the customer account of HSBC and we will deem this a settlement;

(1.0445 tonnes of gold)

 

 

 

The front month of February saw its open interest FALL by 244 contracts DOWN to 370 contracts.  We had 286 notices filed upon yesterday, so we GAINED 42 contracts or an additional 4,200 oz will stand for delivery here and THUS THEY REFUSED TO MORPH into London based forwards and thus negate a fiat bonus. The March non active contract month saw its OI FALL by 114 contracts DOWN to 2683.  The big April contract month saw its OI RISE by 1910 contracts UP to 534,602.

 

We had 68 notices filed today for 6800 oz

 

 

 

FOR THE  FEB 2020 CONTRACT MONTH)Today, 0 notice(s) were issued from JPMorgan dealer account and 0 notices were issued from their client or customer account. The total of all issuance by all participants equates to 68 contract(s) of which 0 notices were stopped (received) by j.P. Morgan dealer and 0 notice(s) was (were) stopped/ Received) by j.P.Morgan customer account and 0 notices by the squid  (Goldman Sachs)

 

To calculate the INITIAL total number of gold ounces standing for the FEB /2020. contract month, we take the total number of notices filed so far for the month (7927) x 100 oz , to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of  FEB. (370 contracts) minus the number of notices served upon today (68 x 100 oz per contract) equals 822,900 OZ OR 25.596 TONNES) the number of ounces standing in this  active month of FEB

Thus the INITIAL standings for gold for the FEB/2020 contract month:

No of notices served (7927 x 100 oz)  + (370)OI for the front month minus the number of notices served upon today (68 x 100 oz )which equals 822,900 oz standing OR 25.596 in this  active delivery month of FEB. which is a still a great opening for gold // amount standing.

 

We GAINED 42 contracts or 4200 oz REFUSED TO LEAVE USA shores to visit the Queen in London.  They REFUSED TO ACCEPT A London based gold forwards as well as NEGATING a fiat bonus

 

 

 

NEW PLEDGED GOLD:  BRINKS

3027.500 OZ  REMOVED TO THE PLEDGED ACCOUNT JAN 10.2020/Brinks

176,211.457 oz NOW PLEDGED  JAN 21.2020/HSBC  5.4807 TONNES

 

 

SURPRISINGLY WE HAVE BEEN WITNESSING NO REAL PHYSICAL GOLD ENTERING THE COMEX VAULTS FOR THE PAST YEAR!! ..ONLY PHONY KILOBAR ENTRIES…. WE HAVE ONLY 38.458 TONNES OF REGISTERED GOLD WHICH CAN SETTLE UPON LONGS.

HERE IS WHAT STOOD DURING THESE PAST 7 MONTHS:  AUGUST 27.153 TONNES

SEPT:                                                                      5.4525 TONNES

OCT…………………………………………………………………………..   37.99 TONNES

NOV……                                                                5.3841 tonnes

DEC………………………….                                              45.912 TONNES

JAN……………………                                                    8.448 TONNES

FEB……………………………………………..                             25.596 tonnes

 

total: 155.9401 tonnes

ACCORDING TO COMEX RULES:

 

IF WE INCLUDE THE PAST 7 MONTHS OF SETTLEMENTS WE HAVE 24.7892 TONNES SETTLED (includes the 1.0445 tonnes of today)

 

IF WE ADD THE 7 DELIVERY MONTHS: 155.9401  tonnes

 

Thus:

155.9401 tonnes of delivery –

24.7892 TONNES DEEMED SETTLEMENT

=131.1509 TONNES STANDING FOR METAL AGAINST 37.485 TONNES OF REGISTERED OR FOR SALE COMEX GOLD! THIS IS WHY GOLD IS SCARCE AT THE COMEX.

 

total registered or dealer gold:   1,381,370.707 oz or  42.966 tonnes
which  includes the following:
a) pledged gold held at HSBC + BRINKS  which cannot settled upon   176,211.457 oz x ( 5.4807 TONNES)//
b)registered gold that can be used to settle upon:1,205,159.3  (37.485 tonnes)
true registered gold  (total registered – pledged tonnes  1,205,195.3  (37.485 tonnes)
total registered, pledged  and eligible (customer) gold;   8,663,541.978 oz 269.49 tonnes

 

 

THE GOLD COMEX IS NOW IN STRESS AS
1. GOLD IS LEAVING THE COMEX 
2. GOLD IS LEAVING THE REGISTERED CATEGORY OF THE COMEX.
3. NO GOLD IS ENTERING THE COMEX

WHY ARE THEY NOT SETTLING?

 

THE COMEX IS AN ABSOLUTE FRAUD..

 

 

end

 

And now for silver

AND NOW THE  DELIVERY MONTH OF FEB.

INITIAL  standings/SILVER

IN TOTAL CONTRAST TO GOLD, HUGE ACTIVITY IN SILVER TODAY.
FEB 21 2019
Silver Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory NIL oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory
 2,103.380 oz
HSBC
Scotia

 

 

Deposits to the Dealer Inventory
554,524.480 oz
Scotia

 

Deposits to the Customer Inventory
56,624.830 oz
Scotia
No of oz served today (contracts)
2
CONTRACT(S)
(10,000 OZ)
No of oz to be served (notices)
0 contracts
 NIL oz)
Total monthly oz silver served (contracts)  288 contracts

1,440,000 oz)

Total accumulative withdrawal of silver from the Dealers inventory this month NIL oz
Total accumulative withdrawal of silver from the Customer inventory this month

**

**

 

 

 

we had 1 inventory movement at the dealer side of things

i )Into Scotia dealer:  554,524.480 oz

 

 

total dealer deposits: 554,524.480 oz

total dealer withdrawals: nil oz

i)we had  1 deposits into the customer account

into JPMorgan:   0

 

i) into Scotia:  56,624.830

 

 

 

 

*** JPMorgan for most of 2017 and in 2018 has adding to its inventory almost every single day.

JPMorgan now has 160.84 million oz of  total silver inventory or 50.03% of all official comex silver. (161.3 million/322.493 million

 

 

 

 

total customer deposits today:  56,624.830   oz

 

we had 2 withdrawals out of the customer account:

 

 

i) Out of HSBC: 1119.600 oz

ii) Out of Scotia; 983.680 ox

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

total withdrawals; 2103.280  oz

We had 1 adjustment:

i Out of Scotia:  54,645.745 oz was adjusted out of the customer and this landed into the dealer account of Scotia

 

 

total dealer silver:  81.922 million

total dealer + customer silver:  322.493 million oz

 

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The total number of notices filed today for the FEB 2019. contract month is represented by 2 contract(s) FOR 10,000 oz

To calculate the number of silver ounces that will stand for delivery in FEB, we take the total number of notices filed for the month so far at 288 x 5,000 oz = 1,440,000 oz to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of FEB. (2) and the number of notices served upon today 2 x (5000 oz) equals the number of ounces standing.

.

Thus the INITIAL standings for silver for the FEB/2019 contract month: 288 (notices served so far) x 5000 oz + OI for front month of Feb (2)- number of notices served upon today (2) x 5000 oz equals 1,440,000 oz of silver standing for the Feb contract month.

 

We gained 2 contracts or an additional 10,000 oz will stand at the comex as these guys refused to  morph into London based forwards and as such negated a fiat bonus 

 

 

 

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN:  THE COMEX IS UNDER ASSAULT FOR BOTH PHYSICAL GOLD AND SILVER WITH SILVER IN THE LEAD BY FAR. DESPITE  MASSIVE RAIDS, LONGS CONTINUE WITH THEIR HUNT AT THE COMEX FOR PHYSICAL METAL.. IT WILL NOT BE LONG BEFORE WE WITNESS A COMMERCIAL FAILURE..STAY TUNED..WE WITNESSED CONSIDERABLE BANKER SHORT COVERING IN SILVER TODAY AND AN ATTEMPTED BANKER SHORT COVERING IN GOLD WITH ZERO SUCCESS.

 

 

 

TODAY’S ESTIMATED SILVER VOLUME: 156,458 CONTRACTS //volume extremely high

 

 

CONFIRMED VOLUME FOR YESTERDAY: 137,481 CONTRACTS..,,volume extremely high

 

 

 

 

 

YESTERDAY’S CONFIRMED VOLUME OF 137,481 CONTRACTS EQUATES to 687 million  OZ  98.1% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION OF SILVER..makes sense!!

COMMODITY LAW SUGGESTS THAT OPEN INTEREST SHOULD NOT BE MORE THAN 3% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION. THE CROOKS ARE SUPPLYING MASSIVE PAPER TRYING TO KEEP SILVER IN CHECK.

The record level of silver open interest is 234,787 contracts set on April 21./2017 with the price at that day at $18.42
The previous record was 224,540 contracts with the price at that time of $20.44

 

end

 

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NPV for Sprott

 

1. Sprott silver fund (PSLV): NAV RISES TO -1.43% ((FEB 21/2019)

2. Sprott gold fund (PHYS): premium to NAV RISES TO -0.02% to NAV FEB 21/2019 )

Note: Sprott silver trust back into NEGATIVE territory at +%-/Sprott physical gold trust is back into NEGATIVE/ 1.43%

(courtesy Sprott/GATA)

3.SPROTT CEF.A FUND (FORMERLY CENTRAL FUND OF CANADA):

NAV 16.19 TRADING 15.79///DISCOUNT 2.48

 

END

 

 

And now the Gold inventory at the GLD/

FEB 21/WITH GOLD UP $28.40 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A HUGE PAPER DEPOSIT OF:2.34 TONNES   //INVENTORY RESTS AT 933.94 TONNES

FEB 20/WITH GOLD UP $9.00 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A HUGE 1.76 TONNES OF GOLD DEPOSIT//INVENTORY RESTS AT 931.60 TONNES

FEB 19/WITH GOLD UP $8.25 TODAY//A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A PAPER DEPOSIT OF 5.85 TONNES//GOLD INVENTORY RESTS AT 929.84 TONES

FEB 18. WITH GOLD UP $17.00//A BIG CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 1.76 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 923.99 TONNES

FEB 14/WITH GOLD UP $6.80 NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 922.23 TONNES

FEB 13/WITH GOLD UP $8.00 TODAY:NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 922.23 TONNES

FEB 12/WITH GOLD UP $1.80 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 6.15 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 922.23 TONNES

FEB 11/WITH GOLD DOWN $9.30 TODAY: NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 916.08 TONNES

FEB 10/WITH GOLD UP $6.10 TODAY:A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 1.17 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 916.08 TONNES

FEB 7/WITH GOLD UP $3.20 TODAY: NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS THIS WEEKEND AT; 914.91 TONNES

FEB 6/WITH GOLD UP $8.80: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 2.33 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 914.91 TONNES

FEB 4//WITH GOLD DOWN $26.10: A VERY STRANGE PHENOMENA: A MONSTROUS DEPOSIT OF 9.38 TONNES//INVENTORY RESTS AT 912.58 TONNES

FEB 3/WITH GOLD DOWN $5.40 TODAY: A SMALL CHANGE: A TINY WITHDRAWAL OF .29 TONNES OF GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 903.21 TONNES( TO PAY FOR FEES LIKE STORAGE INSURANCE ETC)

JAN 31/WITH GOLD DOWN  $0.95 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 903.50 TONNES

JAN 30/WITH GOLD UP $13.05 TODAY: A BIG CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A PAPER DEPOSIT OF 4.09 TONNES INTO THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 903.50 TONES

JAN 29/WITH GOLD UP 0.40 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 899.41 TONNES

JAN 28/WITH GOLD DOWN $6.70 TODAY: A BIG CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A PAPER WITHDRAWAL OF 1.17 TONNES FROM THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 899.41 TONNES

JAN 27//WITH GOLD UP $6.15 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 900.58 TONNES

JAN 24//WITH GOLD UP $6.65 TODAY: A BIG CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 1.76 TONNES INTO THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 900.58 TONNES

JAN 23/WITH GOLD UP $8.90 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 898.82 TONNES

JAN 22/WITH GOLD DOWN $1.00 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A MAMMOTH 19.33 TONNES OF PAPER GOLD ADDED//INVENTORY RESTS AT 898.82 TONES

JAN 21/2010//WITH GOLD DOWN $2.00 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 879.49 TONNES

JAN 17/WITH GOLD UP $9.60 TODAY: A BIG CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: ANOTHER PAPER DEPOSIT OF 1.17 TONNES//INVENTORY RESTS AT 879.49

JAN 16//WITH GOLD DOWN $3.00 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 3.80 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD./INVENTORY RESTS AT 878.32

JAN 15/WITH GOLD UP $9.55 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 874.52 TONNES

JAN 14/WITH GOLD DOWN $5.00 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 874.52 TONNES

 

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FEB 21/2019/Inventory rests tonight at 933.94 tonnes

*IN LAST 767 TRADING DAYS: 3.52 NET TONNES HAVE BEEN REMOVED FROM THE GLD

*LAST 667 TRADING DAYS: A NET 163.55 TONNES HAVE NOW BEEN ADDED INTO  THE GLD INVENTORY.

 

end

 

Now the SLV Inventory/

FEB 21//WITH SILVER UP 22 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 363.433 TONNES

FEB 20/WITH SILVER DOWN 7 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 363.433 TONNES

FEB 19/WITH SILVER UP 23 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 363.433 MILLION OZ//

FEB 18/. WITH SILVER UP 42 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 363.433 MILLION OZ.

FEB 14/WITH SILVER UP 10 CENTS TODAY: A BIG CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 746,000 FROM THE SLV///INVENTORY RESTS AT 363.433 MILLION OZ.

FEB 13/WITH SILVER UP 14 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 364.179 MILLION OZ/

FEB 12//WITH SILVER DOWN 10 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 364.179 MILLION OZ/

FEB 11/ WITH SILVER DOWN 19 CENTS TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A PAPER DEPOSIT OF 1.166 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 364.179 MILLION OZ//

FEB 10/WITH SILVER UP 8 CENTS TODAY: A SMALL CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF //INVENTORY RESTS AT 363.013 MILLION OZ//

FEB 7/WITH SILVER DOWN 11 CENTS TODAY: A SMALL CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV A DEPOSIT OF 701,000//INVENTORY RESTS THIS WEEKEND AT 363.013 MILLION OZ//

FEB 6//WITH SILVER UP 24 CENTS TODAY:A SMALL  CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY: A WITHDRAWAL OF 154,000 OZ AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 362.312 MILLION OZ// AND GENERALLY THIS IS TO PAY FOR FEES LIKE INSURANCE/STORAGE

FEB 4//WITH SILVER DOWN 9 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY//SLV INVENTORY RESTS AT 362.466 MILLION OZ//

FEB 3/WITH SILVER DOWN 30 CENTS TODAY; A SMALL DEPOSIT OF 560,000 OZ INTO SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 362.466 MILLION OZ/

JAN 31/WITH SILVER UP 5 CENTS TODAY: A BIG CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV; A WITHDRAWAL OF 840,000 OZ FROM THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 361/906 MILLION OZ//

JAN 30/WITH SILVER UP 47 CENTS TODAY: A BIG CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A PAPER DEPOSIT OF 1.027 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 362.746 MILLION OZ

JAN 29/WITH SILVER UP 2 CENTS TODAY: A BIG  CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A PAPER DEPOSIT OF 1.587 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV///INVENTORY RESTS AT 361.719 MILLION OZ//

 

JAN 28//WITH SILVER DOWN 59 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 360.132 MILLION OZ

JAN 27//WITH SILVER DOWN 3 CENTS TODAY: A SMALL CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF 327,000 OZ INTO THE SLV..//INVENTORY RESTS AT 359.805 MILLION OZ//

JAN 24//WITH SILVER UP 27 CENTS TODAY: A HUGE PAPER DEPOSIT OF 5.975 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 359.805 MILLION OZ//

JAN 23/WITH SILVER UP ONE CENT TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 353.830 MILLION OZ..

JAN 22/WITH SILVER DOWN ONE CENT: A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY: A WITHDRAWAL OF 1.027 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 353.830 OZ

JAN 21/WITH SILVER DOWN 24 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY FROM THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 354.437 MILLION OZ//

JAN 17/WITH SILVER UP 12 CENTS TODAY: A SMALL WITHDRAWAL OF 420,000 OZ FROM THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 354.437 MILLION OZ.

JAN 16/WITH SILVER DOWN 2 CENTS TODAY: A CONSIDERABLE CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 840,000 OZ FROM THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 354,857 MILLION OZ//

JAN 15/WITH SILVER UP 21 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 355.697 MILLION OZ//

JAN 14/WITH SILVER DOWN 23 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 355.697 MILLION OZ//

FEB 20.2020:  SLV INVENTORY

363.433 MILLION OZ

 

 

LIBOR SCHEDULE AND GOFO RATES:

 

 

YOUR DATA…..

6 Month MM GOFO 1.66/ and libor 6 month duration 1.70

Indicative gold forward offer rate for a 6 month duration/calculation:

G0LD LENDING RATE: + .04

 

XXXXXXXX

12 Month MM GOFO
+ 1.72%

LIBOR FOR 12 MONTH DURATION: 1.76

 

GOFO = LIBOR – GOLD LENDING RATE

GOLD LENDING RATE  = +.04

end

 

 

end

 

PHYSICAL GOLD/SILVER STORIES
i) GOLDCORE BLOG/Mark O’Byrne

Gold Surges to New Record Highs In Euros, Yen, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand Dollars

21, February

*Gold has surged to new record highs in euros, yen, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand dollars and most emerging market currencies.

*Gold has built on recent gains and reached seven year highs in dollars at $1,636/oz and reached new record highs in euros today at €1,515.80/oz.

*Safe haven gold has surged to new record nominal highs in most fiat currencies in the word including the Japanese yen, Australian dollar, the New Zealand dollar, Swedish krone, Norwegian krone, Russian ruble South African rand and Indian rupee

*Gold is at or very close to all time record nominal highs in all fiat currencies except the US dollar; gold is also testing record highs in British pound and Swiss franc.

* Gold looks set to close above the important technical and psychological level of $1,600 per ounce and should it do so, it could quickly move to test the $1,700 per ounce level (see chart above).

*Gold’s all time record highs in most fiat currencies today will be seen in dollar terms in the coming months. Frequently in the last 20 years, gold has gained at the same time as the dollar in the early stages of bull markets prior to dollar weakness setting in and gold then surging in dollar terms.

*Silver has consolidated on the week’s gains and rose to $18.58/oz which is 4.3% higher in the week, while palladium has gone parabolic and is up another 13.3% this week which takes the gains in 2020 alone to over 37%; we expect gold and particularly silver to follow palladium’s lead in the coming months and years (see just released video below).

*The coronavirus outbreak is impacting economic growth forecasts, earnings and hence stock prices. This is seeing prudent investors diversify into safe haven assets.

*Gold and silver bullion coins and bars tend to do well in uncertain times and economic downturns and have a track record of protecting and growing wealth in uncertain times.

*For the week, precious metals have seen strong gains in all currencies with gold 3.2% higher, silver 4.3% higher, platinum 1.7% higher and palladium 13% higher in dollar terms.

-END-

 

ii) Important gold commentaries courtesy of GATA/Chris Powell

A  must must read:  will the coronavirus lead to a gold standard ..find out

Alasdair Macleod…

Alasdair Macleod: Will the coronavirus lead to a gold standard?

 Section: 

By Alasdair Macleod
GoldMoney.com, St. Helier, Jersey, Channel Islands
Thursday, February 20, 2020

Even before the coronavirus sprang upon an unprepared China the credit cycle was tipping the world into recession. The coronavirus makes an existing situation immeasurably worse, shutting down China and disrupting global supply chains to the point where large swathes of global production simply cease.

The crisis is likely to be a wake-up call for complacent investors, who are content to buy benchmark bonds issued by bankrupt governments at wildly excessive prices. A recession turned by the coronavirus into a fathomless slump will lead to a synchronised explosion of debt issuance for which there are no genuine buyers and can only be monetised.

… 

The adjustment to reality will be catastrophic for government finances, and their currencies. This article explains why the collapse in overpriced financial assets and fiat currencies is likely to be rapid, perhaps giving ordinary people in some jurisdictions an early prospect of a return to gold and silver as circulating money. …

… For the remainder of the analysis:

https://www.goldmoney.com/research/goldmoney-insights/will-covid-19-lead…

Will COVID-19 lead to a gold standard?

Even before the coronavirus sprang upon an unprepared China the credit cycle was tipping the world into recession. The coronavirus makes an existing situation immeasurably worse, shutting down China and disrupting global supply chains to the point where large swathes of global production simply cease.

The crisis is likely to be a wake-up call for complacent investors, who are content to buy benchmark bonds issued by bankrupt governments at wildly excessive prices. A recession turned by the coronavirus into a fathomless slump will lead to a synchronised explosion of debt issuance for which there are no genuine buyers and can only be monetised.

The adjustment to reality will be catastrophic for government finances, and their currencies. This article explains why the collapse in overpriced financial assets and fiat currencies is likely to be rapid, perhaps giving ordinary people in some jurisdictions an early prospect of a return to gold and silver as circulating money.

Introduction

My last article suggested that both financial assets and currencies would collapse together. the basis of this supposition is twofold: first, central bank policies are binding together the rise in financial assets with the maintenance of value in fiat currencies. Therefore, if one falls, they both fall. And secondly there is historical precedence for this when one examines The Mississippi bubble 300 years ago.

The timing for such a collapse appears to be imminent. Every day, more and more data confirm that the global economy is sliding into recession. So far, people have been ignoring this important development, but now that it is becoming hard to ignore, no doubt the coronavirus will be blamed. This is a mistake because the factors leading to a slump, principally the end of the expansionary credit cycle combining with trade protectionism against Chinese imports by President Trump, echo developments leading up to the Wall Street crash in October 1929. If that point is accepted, then clearly the world could be on the edge of a very deep slump exacerbated but not caused by the virus.

The coronavirus has all but closed down China’s economy. It threatens to become a pandemic with serious consequences for all other national economies and their fiat currencies.

The central issue flowing from the upcoming monetary crisis centres on the rating of government debt. Almost all welfare-driven states are in debt traps. They think price inflation is under control, because their colleagues in the statistics departments tell them so, allowing them to continue to run increasing budget deficits with apparent impunity. Central banks do not realise that very soon they will be the only buyers of their governments’ debt which they will pay for with newly minted money. The irony of repeating the mistakes of Germany’s Reichsbank in 1918-23 will be completely lost to them and the path of escalating failure will only encourage the pace of printing to be accelerated.

The latest bombshell, coronavirus, is a trigger perhaps for the markets to regain control from the statist price riggers. This has to be the first step to fixing broken economies. The Panglossians in the ranks of the banking and investment communities will be rudely awakened to find themselves staring down the barrel of economic reality. Only then is there a chance that neo-Keynesian lies will be discarded by one and all, and a retreat towards sound money commence.

There is unlikely to be much time. Even without the downhill kick of coronavirus a bear market in bonds could be a devastating event on its own in a period of less than a year. Inflation of fiat currencies and interest rate suppression have been the principal agents for ramping bond prices, which tells us that their collapse will undermine currencies as well, giving complacent investors a double hit. But what are we to measure a decline of fiat currencies against? Sound money of course, gold and silver, with other stores of value, such as bitcoin, favoured by tech-savvy millennials, who will be quick to observe and understand the debauchment of fiat money. And the sooner we throw out fiat currencies, the sooner we can revert to sound money, which is gold.

Changing values for government bonds

We shall take as our primary example the US bond market, because fiat currency fans believe that other than individual time-values it is the risk-free investment yardstick. The ten-year US Treasury bond yields less than 1.6%, but its future pricing raises some serious issues.

Before addressing risk, we should note that time preference theory tells us that possession of cash is always worth more than its non-possession. The discount of that future value is not significant if you part with it to buy a ten-year UST with a view to trading it out in the next few days. But if you buy it with a view to holding it as an investment, then its discounted future value does become relevant. We cannot know what this time preference is, because it can only be realised in an unfettered market, not a market manipulated by the Fed’s actions. But with history as our guide an annualised discounted value of about two per cent for a 10-year bond can be used as a rough guide.

Figure 1, which is a long-term chart of the yield on this bond, appears to indicate there is a solid floor in the region of 1.4% represented by the horizontal line joining points at July 2012, July 2016 and August 2019. This floor is about half a per cent less than our estimated time preference value.

Goldmoney 100

With its yield currently 1.56%, there appears to be very little upside in the price, and we can understand why. And if we accept government estimates of CPI-U all items index rising at 2.5% (year to January) the yield should be closer to 4% and must therefore be heavily suppressed at current levels.

That is not all. While the general level of prices is an economic concept, it is not measurable; a fact which allows the Bureau of Labour Statistics, along with all other nations who use “standardised” CPIs to effectively goal-seek an official figure for its rate of change. Two independent analysts, Chapwood Index and Shadowstats confirm each other that a more realistic rate for monetary depreciation of the US dollar is not 2%, but about 10% annually.

But for the moment, investors believe the price inflation lie because they want to. When they begin to realise the official rate is pure fiction, then one would expect government bonds to reflect a far higher redemption yield. In other words, any upside in bond prices is strictly limited while the downside is substantial. As an illustration, a 10-year bond at the current yield would have to fall from par to $47.40 to yield a more realistic gross 10% to redemption.

Clearly, the US Treasury market is badly mispriced. To estimate the likelihood of the Fed losing control of bond pricing, we should also take into account the state of the US Government’s finances, because we have not yet incorporated future currency debasement risks in our calculations. With a starting budget deficit in the current fiscal year estimated by the Congressional Budget Office at $1,027bn, a recession, let alone a slump, will make government finances considerably worse. For the years 2020-2022 the CBO expects real GDP to grow at an average 2% per annum. In the very near future, due to the coronavirus alone that is likely to be revised sharply downwards, if not by the CBO, but by market participants as further evidence of a looming slump becomes too hard to ignore.

All we need to know for now is the revision of economic prospects will be significant, based on recent evidence of recessionary trends and the potential impact of the coronavirus. The current stage of the credit cycle indicates the banks are in the process of withdrawing circulating credit, hitting SMEs particularly hard. Unemployment will rise, along with bankruptcies. And this assumes little or nothing for the effect of coronavirus.

But even if coronavirus is contained to China and East Asia, US corporations’ supply chains will cease to function, requiring both time and bank credit to relocate. Neither are available in the short term and in the current credit climate. And this is an election year, when any president’s financial and economic prudence are at their lowest ebb and his administration is most inclined to throw money at any and all economic problems.

Without a recession, other things being equal the CBO’s forecasting assumptions and the effect on government debt outstanding might be taken to be credible by gullible investors. But expressed in the economist’s jargon, not all else is equal and we can already see why these forecasts are going horribly wrong. The question then is what the effect on markets will be when these errors are realised and prices for financial assets are adjusted for reality.

The adjustment will follow the current period of complacency. US Treasury bond prices have recently risen, partly on a safe-haven basis, but certainly with an enduring belief in the state’s economic management. Equities are at or close to all-time highs on a relative value to bond yields argument, and an expectation that any recession will be shallow. Further monetary easing is expected to support the economy and maintaining the long-term prospect of a resumption to decent economic growth. Further monetary easing is seen to be bullish.

Concerns about the dollar are broadly absent. There is embedded in investor psychology Part One of Triffin’s dilemma, that concludes otherwise irresponsible fiscal policies will allow the provider of the world’s reserve currency to run deficits to increase its supply to foreigners, always hungry for scarce dollars, which they reinvest in US Treasuries. And if there is a recession, the argument goes, then there will always be a further flight to the safety of dollars and US Treasuries.

Part Two of Triffin’s dilemma ends in crisis, which broadly is what we now face. Investors are yet to take note.

Putting the effects of the coronavirus to one side for the moment, in their private capacity businessmen and their bankers are usually the first to see that economic optimism is misplaced. Businessmen are battling in deteriorating trading conditions, and bankers with their internal market intelligence and its impact on risk assessment. The authorities, particularly the Fed, who have made the mistake of believing in their own statistics, and of falling hook, line and sinker for Keynesian stimulation theories, will be next.

One can envisage the setup: having seen from its own internal information the economy is not performing as hoped, the Fed decides to call in the management of the G-SIB banks to hear their concerns, gather intelligence and reassure them they are on the case. Afterwards, we can imagine the following conversation:

Banker A. “Well, what did you make of that?”

Banker B. “The Fed must be worried to feel the need to reassure us. Things must be worse than we thought.”

Bankers A & B. (Thinking) I’ll report back to my Board that the Fed is very worried, and we must urgently reduce our loan book before our competitors do.

It has happened before. None of this would occur in an economy which is based on sound money and free markets, only susceptible to one-off disasters, such as war and the coronavirus. Instead, the US economy is managed on the basis of maintaining the crumbling confidence of consumers and the uninterrupted provision to them of credit. After many years of being bailed out, economic actors have become fully dependent on confidence being maintained and have no alternative plan in the case of its failure. But failure is now becoming evident.

The central question therefore devolves upon the future credit rating of the US Government. Assuming the Fed is losing control of the overall monetary situation and pricing returns to being set by markets, how do you rate a very large borrower with the following credit profile:

  • No surplus of income over expenses since 2001. Current trend is for further deterioration with no end in sight.
  • Net present value of future liabilities mandated by law is independently estimated (Kotlikoff) to be over $200 trillion. Current income (taxes etc.) of $3.6 trillion gives a ratio of income to future expense of well over 50 times. Tax income will almost certainly decline raising this ratio further.
  • Net interest cost at unrealistically low interest rates is 38% of last year’s deficit. A more realistic interest rate could have an immediate and catastrophic effect on finances.
  • Management seems unjustifiably optimistic that future revenue will pick up.

In the absence of a management that agrees to radically alter course, there can only be one answer: do not lend it any money and eliminate all existing exposure. When they wake up, this should, and therefore will be, the reality facing not just the banks but all holders of US Treasuries, including foreigners without sound reasons to be invested in them.

Consequently, the switch from the current state of suppressive control to realistic pricing of government debt will be both vicious and rapid. The only foreigners likely to delay selling existing US Government debt are some governments, either under the US Government’s cosh, or not wishing to exacerbate the situation. With cross-border trade collapsing, others have no good reason to hold dollars and dollar-denominated debt, let alone extend their exposure. Furthermore, in recent years large hedge funds have made hay out of being short euros and yen and long dollars and US Treasury debt through fx swaps. Those trillion-dollar positions need to be unwound as well, which will put additional pressure on the dollar and the bond markets.

At anything close to these yields, the only buyer will be the Fed, which, as well as new issuance will have to absorb foreign sales and those of distressed hedge funds. For these reasons the monetisation of debt will almost certainly have to be on a far larger scale than following the Lehman crisis. There is no price for government debt in these circumstances, because the higher the interest rate, the worse the numbers become. Nor will there be any value in the currency used to buy it, because if the government is effectively bust its unbacked currency will also be worthless.

Other governments with substantial future welfare commitments are in a similar position. High debt to GDP ratios will become a debt trap on a combination of recession-fuelled budget deficits and realistic funding costs. In the EU and Japan, government funding costs have even further to travel from under the zero bound.

Meanwhile, there is an air of complacency with a general assumption that the next crisis will lead to yet lower rates, as has been the case with every credit crisis for the last forty years. But as Figure 1, the chart of the ten-year US Treasury above clearly showed, after a long decline in yields the world’s reserve currency benchmark yield is now struggling to go any lower. Zero or even negative dollar rates imposed by the Fed cannot alter that fact.

This is important, because central banks have tried everything that they can think of to restore economic growth and have run out of ideas. Led by the Bank for International Settlements, they are now pleading with their governments to borrow more while rates are cheap in the hope that greater budget deficits will stop the world from sliding into recession.

Other central banks are in the same boat

The debt devil tempts, and the weak follow, and debtor hell is the highest reward he can offer. The response by all G20 members to a sliding global economy will obviously be a BIS sanctioned coordinated burst of deficit spending leading to a synchronised expansion of government bond supply and fiat money to pay for it. It is proving impossible, even for a free trader like Boris Johnson, to resist the political imperative to build new hospitals, train thousands of new nurses and policemen and throw money at a new, wildly over-budget railway connecting the North of England to London. Which, incidentally, will probably empty the North of northerners seeking their fortunes in London, instead of spreading London’s wealth northwards. Most of this spending is classified as investment, but the fact is that without a commensurate increase in personal savings it is inflationary spending.

Perhaps the dollar will not be the first to slide, given the shutting down of China’s economy by the coronavirus. The yuan, surely, will be the first to suffer in the foreign exchanges, a process that appears to be starting. But this might galvanise the People’s Bank into positive action to stabilise the currency, which it can do by tying it to gold. In doing so, it would do humanity a favour by leading the way early towards a sound money solution to the unfolding financial and economic crisis, which with the coronavirus threatens to be potentially much worse than anything recorded in modern times.

The reason the dollar is likely to be next to slide is the exposure foreigners have to it, the equivalent of more than one year’s GDP. It is comprised of about $4 trillion in bank deposits, and $19.4 trillion of US securities, according to the last available TIC figures.[i]

For the short-term, perhaps China’s imploding economy, taking Germany’s and others with it, encourages the investor’s myth that the dollar is a safe haven. The trade-weighted index has strengthened in recent weeks on the back of both the yuan and euro weakening, and US Treasury yields have declined as well. It is a situation unlikely to survive deteriorating economic conditions for much longer.

In addition to foreign sellers, speculative positions of perhaps several trillion dollars in currency swaps held by large hedge funds will have to be reversed if and when the dollar is undermined by foreign selling. That would lead to temporary buying of euros and yen. When that short-term effect is over, presumably these currencies will then suffer the combination of collapsing values for government bonds and stockmarket values at the same time as the currencies themselves fall measured against gold, silver and bitcoin.

Sound money alternatives signal the fiat crisis

An unfolding crisis from the combined effects of the turn of the credit cycle and the coronavirus can be expected to hit individual fiat currencies both sequentially and generally. This article has made some suggestions over a likely sequence: yuan, dollar, euro and yen. But how things actually unfold is for the moment a matter of speculation. From the turmoil ahead of us, the clear winners are likely to be gold and silver, and supply-constrained hedges such as bitcoin.

In real terms, gold is still under-priced relative to the dollar, based on their relative quantities. This is illustrated in Figure 2, which is of gold adjusted by the increase in the fiat money quantity.

Goldmoney 101

This chart should contradict any thoughts that the recent increase in the price of gold might be overdone. The truth is that the devastating bear market in the gold price following the spike in 1980 has almost eliminated gold from investment portfolios in favour of inflation beneficiaries. If that long period is coming to an end, investors will attempt to switch their allocations from inflation beneficiaries and bonds with rising yields in favour of inflation protection. For this reason, the rise in the dollar gold price could be very dramatic, particularly when a further acceleration of global monetary debasement is taken into account. And this is before we see official CPI measures move much above their 2% goal-sought targets.

For both gold and silver, we can expect initial moves reflecting their eventual replacement of failing fiat as the trusted money in circulation. In the case of silver, it is worth mentioning that its original price relationship under bimetallic standards only become discarded when silver was generally dropped as money in favour of gold alone in the 1870s. When fiat fails, it is likely that silver will regain a secondary monetary role, and its remonetisation will have a substantial impact on its purchasing power. From a current gold/silver ratio of 87 times, a move towards the old ratio of approximately 15 times means that for speculators buying into the sound money argument, silver is likely to be the catch-up form of sound money.

Bitcoin

During previous currency hiatuses, the problem of failing fiat money has always been evidenced in the rising prices of precious metals. Since the last financial crisis, there has arisen a new category of store of value in thousands of different cryptocurrencies. While most of them appear to be akin to quack monetary remedies, the first cryptocurrency to be devised with its innovative blockchain technology is sufficiently understood by a growing band of followers to be firmly established as a form of money.

Bitcoin is currently not ideally suited as a means of settling transactions, or for making value comparisons between one good against another. Settlements are severely restricted relative to the superior scalability offered by credit and debit cards. Where bitcoin scores is as a store of value.

In learning about bitcoin and why it works, a new generation of tech-savvy millennials have become aware of the way their governments debauch their currencies as a means of secretly transferring wealth from them as individuals to the state, the banks, and their favoured borrowers. Bitcoin supporters are an intelligent, educated mob angry at their governments’ abuse of their fiat currencies.

In all populations, there is therefore a marginally greater recognition of the fragility of state currencies, and therefore the abandonment of them by the general public is likely to develop over a shorter time period than experience of previous instances would suggest.

Conclusion

The straws in the wind listed in this article point to a more rapid collapse of financial asset values and currencies than generally thought by sound money theorists who have long anticipated this outcome. Doubts about the timing have been settled to a degree by the sudden development of the coronavirus, which has already imploded China’s economy, disrupting global supply chains and the provision of consumer goods.

To the extent the coronavirus has had a hand in the forthcoming destruction of fiat currencies and Keynesian mythology, we can take some comfort that it will have brought forward the eventual reintroduction of gold and gold standards. The path is not straightforward. There will be destruction of financial asset values and the economic consequences for ordinary people will be dire. We can expect widespread civil unrest and political instability.

Western governments and their advisers are not familiar with the arguments in favour of gold, having spent half a century dismissing it. This fact favours the new economies which have not discarded gold, which include Russia, China, and many other Asian nations. Some governments, such as India, might attempt to confiscate their citizens’ gold, but in general the collapse of western economic fallacies could lead to Asia’s economic superiority.

It will be a rough ride for the rest of us.

iii) Other physical stories:

 

Due to the criminal conviction of trader Edmonds, the USA prosecution is seeking to halt the civil lawsuit. I was misinformed: all discoveries in a civil suit are public and because of that, the prosecution gives the defendants the right to plead the 5th if their testimony incriminates them
(courtesy zerohedge/Chris Powell)

US seeks halt in civil lawsuit accusing JP Morgan of manipulating metals market, citing criminal case

  • The U.S. wants a federal judge to halt a civil lawsuit accusing J. P. Morgan of manipulating precious metals markets. The Justice Department cited an ongoing criminal case as its reason for the request.
  • A former J. P. Morgan trader pleaded guilty in Connecticut last month to manipulation charges.
  • In the guilty plea, the trader said he had learned to make bogus trade orders from senior traders at the bank and that he used the strategy hundreds of times with the knowledge and consent of his immediate supervisors.

A sign of JP Morgan Chase Bank is seen in front of their headquarters tower in New York.

Amr Alfiky | Reuters
A sign of JP Morgan Chase Bank is seen in front of their headquarters tower in New York.

The Justice Department is asking a judge to put the brakes on a civil lawsuit against J. P. Morgan Chase, citing an ongoing probe into a “related criminal case” that involves alleged manipulation of precious metals markets.

The department wants a six-month postponement in the proceedings of the civil lawsuit, which was filed in 2015 by hedge fund manager Daniel Shak and two commodity traders. The government also says it could ask for a longer delay in the case, according to a court filing on Monday.

The move comes days after Shak’s lawyer, David Kovel, sought permission to reopen questioning of two former J. P. Morgan traders and the bank’s current global head of base and precious metals trading.

Kovel, in making the request with the Manhattan federal judge in the civil case, cited last month’s guilty plea by one of those former traders, John Edmonds, in federal court in Connecticut.

Edmonds admitted making bogus bids on precious metals contracts while working at the bank from 2009 to 2015.

Neither J. P. Morgan Chase nor Kovel’s clients have opposed the Justice Department’s request.

In arguing for a delay, the Justice Department said Shak’s lawsuit is “related” to Edmonds’ criminal case and that Edmonds has “pleaded guilty and acknowledged his own participation in such conduct, as well as that of other traders.”

“Edmonds awaits sentencing, but the broader investigation is ongoing,” the Justice Department said. The U.S. wants to delay the civil case “to protect the integrity of its ongoing criminal investigation,” it said.

J. P. Morgan did not respond to a request for comment by CNBC. Kovel declined to comment.

Tuesday night, after this story first was published, Judge Paul Engelmayer ordered the federal prosecutors to explain in detail by Monday why postponing proceedings in the civil lawsuit would not harm those involved, and why reopening questioning “would be detrimental to the Government’s ongoing criminal investigation.”

Englemayer also wrote that he regards Edmonds’ guilty plea “as potentially highly consequential” to the civil case.

In his guilty plea, the 36-year-old Edmonds said he had learned to make bogus trade orders from senior traders at the bank and that he used the strategy hundreds of times with the knowledge and consent of his immediate supervisors. He admitted to working with “unnamed co-conspirators” at J. P. Morgan, according to the Justice Department.

Kovel wants to question Edmonds again as well as Michael Nowak, the bank’s global head of base and precious metal trading, and former J. P. Morgan Chase Managing Director Robert Gottlieb. The three had previously answered questions under oath in the civil case.

Kovel said in court filings that Nowak was the immediate supervisor of Edmonds, while Gottlieb was Edmonds’ mentor.

In his prior deposition, Edmonds said that Gottlieb sat only a “couple feet” away from him for about five years, and that he was “somebody [he] looked up to in the business,” who helped guide and train him.

Nowak is described by Edmonds as his direct supervisor, with whom he would sometimes discuss trading strategies. Nowak was also the person responsible for overseeing the performance and risk of Edmonds’ portfolio, according to the deposition.

Edmonds also stated in his prior deposition that he would enter precious metals trades for both Nowak and Gottlieb, among others.

The civil lawsuit claims Shak and his fellow plaintiffs lost tens of millions of dollars as a result of actions by J. P. Morgan’s traders.

A federal judge tells traders that they can combine cases (with the other 6 banks) as they accused JPMorgan of rigging the precious metals market
(courtesy CNBC)

Federal judge tells traders they can combine cases accusing JP Morgan of rigging metals market

  • Litigation in a separate civil case has been put on hold until at least May at the behest of the Justice Department, which is investigating a “related criminal case” that involves alleged market manipulation by precious metals traders at J. P. Morgan.
  • Judge John Koeltl of the Southern District of New York appointed the White Plains, N.Y., law firm Lowey Dannenberg as interim lead counsel for the proposed class action.

71671201

Spencer Platt | Getty Images

A group of traders from across the U.S. who allege that J. P. Morgan Chase manipulated precious metals markets for years are one step closer to bringing a class action suit against the nation’s largest bank.

Earlier this month, a federal judge said five separate lawsuits making similar allegations against the bank could be combined, potentially including thousands of people who traded in the precious metals market from Jan. 2009 through Dec. 2015.

Litigation in a separate civil case has been put on hold until at least May at the behest of the Justice Department, which is investigating a “related criminal case” that involves alleged market manipulation by precious metals traders at J. P. Morgan.

J. P. Morgan declined to comment on this story.

Judge John Koeltl of the Southern District of New York appointed the White Plains, N.Y., law firm Lowey Dannenberg as interim lead counsel for the proposed class action.

Vincent Briganti, a partner at the firm, filed the first suit seeking class action status in November on behalf of Dominick Cognata, a trader who alleges he suffered losses due to J.P. Morgan’s illegal trading conduct in the silver and gold futures and options markets.

That was after the federal court in Connecticut unsealed a criminal plea agreement by John Edmonds, a former J.P. Morgan metals trader. In his guilty plea, Edmonds, who is 36-years old, admitted that he and other “unnamed co-conspirators” fraudulently manipulated the precious metals markets while they were employed at J. P. Morgan from 2009 to 2015.

Edmonds said he had learned the illegal trading tactics from senior traders, and then used them hundreds of times with the knowledge of and consent of his immediate supervisors.

Briganti’s lawsuit also names John Edmonds and a group of yet-to-be-identified precious metals traders and the bank as defendants.

On Wednesday, the lawyers sent a letter to Judge Koeltl saying they were having difficulty locating Edmonds to serve him legal papers and requested a 30-day extension to do so, which the judge granted on Thursday. Briganti noted that they have been in contact with Edmonds’ attorney in the criminal case. Edmonds’ attorney and Briganti could not be reached for comment.

“We are hopeful that this extension will result in completing service on Mr. Edmonds without formal motion practice and a request for alternative means of service,” Briganti said in the letter.

The next step in the civil case is for the plaintiffs to file an amended class action complaint and set a schedule for defendants to respond.

In addition to the proposed class action, J. P. Morgan also faces a separate civil suit which also accuses the bank of rigging precious metals markets.

end

March 4.2019

Parker City News

JP Morgan faces potential class action lawsuit after guilty pleas by a former metals trader

Traders from across the U.S. are banding together to accuse J. P. Morgan Chase of manipulating precious metals markets for years.

At least six lawsuits, all making similar allegations against the nation‘s largest bank, have been filed in New York federal court in the past month, since federal prosecutors in Connecticut with a former J. P. Morgan Chase metals trader.

The cases could potentially include thousands of people who traded in the precious metals market. The White Plains, N.Y., law firm Lowey Dannenberg is asking the court to combine the cases and name it as the lead.

The law firm‘s commodities group is led by Vincent Briganti, the attorney who filed the first lawsuit on behalf of Dominick Cognata, a New York resident who alleges he suffered losses due to J. P. Morgan‘s trading conduct in the silver and gold futures and options markets.

A combined case, seeking class action status, would include anyone who purchased or sold futures contracts or an option on NYMEX platinum or palladium or COMEX silver or gold between at least Jan. 1, 2009, and Dec. 31, 2015. The lawyers believe that “at least hundreds, if not thousands” of traders would be eligible to join the case.

Named as defendants in all of the lawsuits are John Edmonds, a 36-year old former metals trader at J. P. Morgan, a group of yet-to-be-identified precious metals traders and the bank.

Edmonds, a New York resident, pleaded guilty in October to one count of conspiracy to defraud the market and manipulate prices of precious metals futures contracts and one count of commodities fraud. In the criminal plea, Edmonds admitted that he and other “unnamed co- conspirators” at J. P. Morgan, fraudulently manipulated precious metals markets from 2009 to 2015, the same time frame covered in the class action suits.

Briganti filed the initial class action on Nov. 7, just one day after the Justice Department unsealed Edmonds‘ plea in the U.S. District Court of Connecticut.

Edmonds admitted in his guilty plea that he deployed the illegal trading scheme hundreds of times with the direct knowledge and consent of his immediate supervisors. Plaintiffs say they have suffered economic injury, including monetary losses, as a direct result of actions by Edmonds and the other unnamed J. P. Morgan metals traders in the futures and options contracts.

One of the suits alleges that “the number of unlawful trades that JP Morgan traders executed in precious metals futures markets is at least in the thousands.”

J. P. Morgan declined to comment. Lowey Dannenberg did not respond to a request for comment by CNBC.

The Justice Department‘s criminal investigation is still ongoing and recently caused a separate related civil case to be put on hold for at least six months while the government continues its investigation. That civil lawsuit, which also accuses J. P. Morgan of rigging the precious metals market, was filed in 2015 by hedge fund manager Daniel Shak and two commodity traders.

After reviewing the details of the plea agreement, David Kovel, the attorney for Shak‘s suit, sought to re- interview Edmonds, along with two other current and former senior traders at the bank. However, the government argued that reopening questioning would be detrimental to the ongoing criminal investigation. The federal judge overseeing the proceedings ordered a six-month stay in the civil case.

Kovel declined to comment.

Edmonds was originally scheduled to be sentenced in Hartford, Conn., on Wednesday, Dec. 19, but a court filing on Nov. 27 shows the sentencing has been postponed until June. A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney for Connecticut could not elaborate on why the sentencing was postponed since the court filing is under seal.

-END-

Justice Department stalls another class action in gold market rigging, this one against JPM

 Section: 

9:47a ET Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

Proceedings in the federal class-action anti-trust lawsuit against JPMorganChase charging the investment bank with manipulating the gold and silver futures markets —

http://www.gata.org/node/18844

— have been suspended for three months at the request of the U.S. Justice Department, just as the department has arranged suspension of proceedings in the class-action anti-trust lawsuit against Deutsche Bank charging similar market manipulation.

… 

In both cases the Justice Department has told U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York that proceedings would jeopardize its criminal investigation into market rigging, which has been admitted by a former JPMorganChase trader, John Edmonds, who awaits sentencing.

According to court filings, the White Plains, New York, law firm representing the plaintiffs against JPMorganChase, Lowey Dannenberg, concurred in the government’s request to suspend proceedings. The stay is to continue for three months and may be extended.

The Justice Department’s motion, granted by the court on February 26 —

http://www.gata.org/files/JPMorganChaseClassActionStay.pdf

— said “the government is not seeking an open-ended stay that could indefinitely postpone this matter and thus jeopardize the parties’ interests in a timely resolution.” The motion added, “Any developments in the criminal case during the period the consolidated action is stayed may reduce or completely resolve the need to litigate certain issues in the consolidated action.”

Much of the Justice Department’s motion is redacted to conceal from the public evidence still under investigation. Edmonds has said he and other traders manipulated the gold and silver markets for years with the knowledge of their supervisors at JPMorganChase. In its motion to conceal that evidence, also granted by the court on February 26, the Justice Department said disclosure “could lead to destruction of evidence, flight from prosecution, and otherwise interfere with the government’s ability to conduct its investigation”:

http://www.gata.org/files/JPMorganChaseClassActionStaySeal.pdf

Monetary metals investors may be skeptical of the Justice Department’s stalling the Deutsche Bank and JPMorganChase cases, since the department and the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission do not seem ever to have responded conscientiously to complaints of gold and silver market rigging until the class actions commenced.

How much time will the court give the Justice Department to delay getting to the bottom of the issue? The court might hasten matters if enough monetary metals mining companies protested the harm done to them and their shareholders by market rigging, but of course most monetary metals mining companies don’t mind at all.

CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.
CPowell@GATA.org

* * *

Your early FRIDAY morning currency, Asian stock market results,  important USA/Asian currency crosses, gold/silver pricing overnight along with the price of oil Major stories overnight/7 AM EST

i) Chinese yuan vs USA dollar/CLOSED / LAST AT: 7.0316/ GETTING VERY DANGEROUSLY PAST 7:1

//OFFSHORE YUAN:  7.0429   /shanghai bourse CLOSED UP 9.52 POINTS OR 0.31%

HANG SANG CLOSED DOWN 300.35 POINTS OR 1.09%

 

2. Nikkei closed DOWN 92.41 POINTS OR 0.39 %

 

 

 

 

3. Europe stocks OPENED ALL RED/

 

 

 

USA dollar index DOWN TO 99.71/Euro RISES TO 1.0804

3b Japan 10 year bond yield: FALLS TO. –.06/ !!!!(Japan buying 100% of bond issuance)/Japanese yen vs usa cross now at 111.98/ THIS IS TROUBLESOME AS BANK OF JAPAN IS RUNNING OUT OF BONDS TO BUY./JAPAN 10 YR YIELD IS NOW TARGETED AT .11%/JAPAN LOSING CONTROL OF THEIR BOND MARKET//

 

 

3c Nikkei now JUST BELOW 17,000

3d USA/Yen rate now well below the important 120 barrier this morning

3e WTI:: 52.85 and Brent: 58.18

3f Gold UP/JAPANESE Yen DOWN CHINESE YUAN:   ON -SHORE DOWN/OFF- SHORE: DOWN

3g Japan is to buy the equivalent of 108 billion uSA dollars worth of bond per month or $1.3 trillion. Japan’s GDP equals 5 trillion usa./“HELICOPTER MONEY” OFF THE TABLE FOR NOW /REVERSE OPERATION TWIST ON THE BONDS: PURCHASE OF LONG BONDS AND SELLING THE SHORT END

Japan to buy 100% of all new Japanese debt and by 2018 they will have 25% of all Japanese debt. Fifty percent of Japanese budget financed with debt.

3h Oil DOWN for WTI and DOWN FOR Brent this morning

3i European bond buying continues to push yields lower on all fronts in the EMU. German 10yr bund FALLS TO -.44%/Italian 10 yr bond yield DOWN to 0.91% /SPAIN 10 YR BOND YIELD DOWN TO 0.22%…ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD/GERMAN BUND: 1.35: DANGEROUS FOR THE ITALIAN BANKING SYSTEM

3j Greek 10 year bond yield FALLS TO : 0.97

3k Gold at $1635.00 silver at: 18.51   7 am est) SILVER NEXT RESISTANCE LEVEL AT $18.50

3l USA vs Russian rouble; (Russian rouble DOWN 28/100 in roubles/dollar) 64.44

3m oil into the 52 dollar handle for WTI and 58 handle for Brent/

3n Higher foreign deposits out of China sees huge risk of outflows and a currency depreciation. This can spell financial disaster for the rest of the world/

JAPAN ON JAN 29.2016 INITIATES NIRP. THIS MORNING THEY SIGNAL THEY MAY END NIRP. TODAY THE USA/YEN TRADES TO 111.98 DESTROYING JAPANESE CITIZENS WITH HIGHER FOOD INFLATION

30 SNB (Swiss National Bank) still intervening again in the markets driving down the SF. It is not working: USA/SF this morning .9824 as the Swiss Franc is still rising against most currencies. Euro vs SF is 1.0611 well above the floor set by the Swiss Finance Minister. Thomas Jordan, chief of the Swiss National Bank continues to purchase euros trying to lower value of the Swiss Franc.

3p BRITAIN VOTES AFFIRMATIVE BREXIT/LOWER PARLIAMENT APPROVES BREXIT COMMENCEMENT/ARTICLE 50 COMMENCES MARCH 29/2017

3r the 10 Year German bund now NEGATIVE territory with the 10 year FALLING to 0.44%

The bank withdrawals were causing massive hardship to the Greek bank. the Greek referendum voted overwhelming “NO”. Next step for Greece will be the recapitalization of the banks and that will be difficult.

4. USA 10 year treasury bond at 1.50% early this morning. Thirty year rate at 1.93%

5. Details Ransquawk, Bloomberg, Deutsche bank/Jim Reid.

6.  TURKISH LIRA:  UP  TO 6.1183..DEADLY TO TURKEY, THEY WILL NO DOUBT DEFAULT SHORTLY

Futures Slide For 2nd Day As Traders Ask If Central Banks Can Halt A Global Viral Pandemic

Are investors finally starting to grasp that a world paralyzed by a deadly global viral pandemic which has crippled consumer and producer sentiment, and may result in millions of deaths, can not be simply rebooted by central banks printing a few trillions dollars?

The answer has yet to emerge but for the second day in a row shares across the world and US equity futures fell – set for their worst week in four – as investors dumped riskier assets for the safety of bonds and gold, with coronavirus cases in China rebounding and soaring in South Korea.

“U.S. and EU equity markets have been sold across the board with core global yields benefiting from safe-haven flows,” said Rodrigo Catril, a senior FX strategist at NAB.

US index futures were all deep in the red, after stocks in Korea and Hong Kong saw declines of more than 1%, as the MSCI world equity index fell 0.2%, while MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan slipped 1%. E-Mini futures slipped 0.3%. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index was initially down 0.3% before erasing much of the decline, with losses in energy and automaker shares countering gains in utilities and banks.

Earlier in the session, Asian stocks fell, led by IT and energy companies, amid renewed concerns about the impact of the coronavirus as cases surged. Most markets in the region were down, with South Korea’s Kospi and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index falling more than 1%, while the Shanghai Composite advanced. Trading volume for MSCI Asia Pacific Index members was 23% above the monthly average for this time of the day. Worries are growing that the coronavirus is spreading outside of China, with the number of cases in South Korea surpassing 200. Investors are now trying to gauge the impact the outbreak will have on corporate earnings. The Topix was little changed, with V-cube rising and Misawa falling the most. The Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.3%, with Shanghai Zijiang Enterprise Group and Anhui Xinli Finance posting the biggest advances.

The declines in stocks come as manufacturing data in Australia and Japan added to worries about slower economic growth, while weak South Korean export data weighed on the won.  China reported a jump in new infections despite once again changing the definition of a “case” intentionally to give the impression that it has nearly defeated the pandemic (spoiler alert: it hasn’t), with finance leaders from the Group of 20 major economies meeting in Saudi Arabia over the weekend set to discuss risks to the global economy stemming from the outbreak. Though investors have been sanguine about the long term economic risks from the virus, a steady drip of new cases in countries beyond China has kept worries gnawing away, with South Korea on Friday recording over 100 new cases, doubling overnight in a representation of what a true, unmanipulated exponential curve looks like.

Underscoring the economic impact from the coronavirus, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) estimated losses for Asian airlines alone could amount to almost $28 billion this year, with most of that in China. Corporate earnings are increasingly under threat as U.S. manufacturers, like many others, scramble for alternative sources as China’s supply chains seize up.

It’s risk-off – bonds are being bought again and hedges are being put into play at the moment,” said Olivier Marciot, investment manager at Unigestion. Not helping the nerves were manufacturing surveys underscoring the grim state of the Japanese economy. Japan’s purchasing managers’ index dropped to 47.6 in February, from 48.8, marking the steepest contraction in seven years; just days earlier Japan reported its worst quarterly GDP print in five years, suggesting a technical recession in Q1 is now guaranteed absent some miracle.

European surveys painted a somewhat brighter picture, with French business activity growing faster than expected in February on a rebound in the service sector. Germany’s private sector expansion also held steady, although as Markit notes, half the increase in the German mfg PMI was due to slower delivery times which, of course, are a function of the coronavirus and not tightening supply-side (which is traditionally bullish). As such there will be a violent reversal lower once manufacturing managers realize what is behind the supply chain slowdowns, but not just yet.

“It may be a much longer road,” Dan Farley, chief investment officer of the investment solutions group at State Street Global Advisors, told Bloomberg TV in Sydney about the virus impact. “We have to be very mindful that this is not an easily solvable issue and the impact on consumer demand for a number of different sectors is going to be something that we need to be watching out for.”

As risk assets sold off, Treasuries climbed, pushing the yield on 10-year securities below 1.5% for the first time since September. Yields on 30-year U.S. Treasuries fell below the psychologically important 2% level to the lowest since September 2019. Yields on 10-year notes were down 9 basis points for the week at 1.498%, lows last seen in September. Ten-year German government bond yields fell to a four-month low DE10YT=RR, with the entire yield curve on the cusp of turning negative. The entire Dutch yield also returned to negative territory.

In FX, the dollar was little changed against a basket of major peers after a four-day winning streak. The euro strengthened from three year lows after data showed economic activity in the common-currency area rebounded unexpectedly due to a misread of delayed supply chains. The most spectacular gains had come on the Japanese yen, as a run of dire domestic data stirred talk of recession there and ended months of stalemate in the market. Still, the yen rallied on Friday, gaining 0.5% against the dollar in European trading to 111.51 though the greenback was still set for its best week since July 2018 with a rise of 1.7%.

“It was too soon to write off the yen as a safe haven,” said Mayank Mishra, an FX strategist at Standard Chartered in Singapore. “I think the yen is reasserting its status as a safe haven.”

Another casualty of its close trade ties with China was the Australian dollar, which plumbed 11-years lows

In commodities, crude oil fell after hitting the highest in almost four weeks in the wake of a surge in U.S. exports and a dramatic slowdown in the expansion of domestic inventories. Gold was last up 0.8% at $1,631.16 having added 3.1% for the week so far to seven-year highs

Expected data include PMIs and existing home sales. Deere is among companies reporting earnings

Market Snapshot

  • S&P 500 futures down 0.4% to 3,356.00
  • STOXX Europe 600 down 0.4% to 428.39
  • MXAP down 0.5% to 166.47
  • MXAPJ down 1% to 545.44
  • Nikkei down 0.4% to 23,386.74
  • Topix down 0.03% to 1,674.00
  • Hang Seng Index down 1.1% to 27,308.81
  • Shanghai Composite up 0.3% to 3,039.67
  • Sensex down 0.4% to 41,170.12
  • Australia S&P/ASX 200 down 0.3% to 7,138.96
  • Kospi down 1.5% to 2,162.84
  • German 10Y yield fell 0.3 bps to -0.447%
  • Euro up 0.3% to $1.0816
  • Italian 10Y yield fell 4.7 bps to 0.74%
  • Spanish 10Y yield fell 1.4 bps to 0.212%
  • Brent futures down 1.5% to $58.41/bbl
  • Gold spot up 18% to $1,634.93
  • U.S. Dollar Index down 0.3% to 99.62

Top Overnight News

  • While China had the vast majority of cases and deaths before, there are now signs that infections are spreading more rapidly within other Asian countries
  • Fear of the spreading coronavirus has turned the yen from a haven asset to a liability. The Japanese currency has slumped about 2% against the dollar this week to its weakest in 10 months, even as traditional havens gold and Treasuries pushed higher
  • China car sales plunged 92% during the first two weeks of February as the coronavirus outbreak kept buyers away from showrooms
  • The last snapshot of the U.K.’s public finances before the March 11 budget show the budget deficit is rising more slowly than the Office for Budget Responsibility predicted. It means that borrowing in the fiscal year through March is likely to come in below the 47.6 billion pounds ($61 billion) estimated
  • The Swiss National Bank appears to be content for now to allow the franc to drift higher, with little evidence that it’s getting into a dogfight with markets. While reluctance to aggressively sell the franc may be partly driven by fear of being labeled a currency manipulator by the U.S., SNB data also suggest the valuation may not be so extreme as it appears
  • Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said that, while the central bank will keep monitoring the benefits and side-effects of its policy, there’s no need for an overall framework review now
  • As pressure mounts on Sweden’s central bank to reconsider negative interest rates, board members are signaling they’d rather rely on bond purchases to support the largest Nordic economy

Asian equities traded with downside bias after a weak handover from Wall Street, which saw notable mid-day selling despite a lack of fresh fundamental drivers, with some pointing to technical and algo-related action driving the downside. ASX 200 (-0.3%) conformed to the broad risk tone as the index pulled back further from its recent record high. Nikkei 225 (-0.4%) swung between gains and losses, with downside cushioned to an extent by a predominantly weaker JPY. Meanwhile, index heavyweight Softbank’s shares rose in almost 3% after the Sprint and T-Mobile boards unanimously approved the merger amendments brought up by the latter’s parent company Deutsche Telekom – for reference Softbank owns 84% of Sprint whilst Deutsche Telekom controls 63% of T-Mobile. Elsewhere, Hang Seng (-1.1%) lagged as all stocks resided in negative territory for most of the session, and with gambling name underperforming as Macau casinos continue to cautiously reopen, but with business limited amid the city’s stringent controls on visitor entry and with ferry suspensions from Hong Kong. Meanwhile, Shanghai Comp (+0.3%) traded warily earlier in the session, although the index clambered off lows and rose to session highs after a MOFCOM official stated that the government is speeding up the study of new measures to further support companies from the impact of the virus outbreak. Finally, KOSPI (-1.5%) posted heavy losses amid the rising domestic COVID-19 cases, with President Moon also reportedly considering raising the alert level over the spread in the country.

Top Asian News

  • Japan Bourse Outlines New Stock Market Structure, Listing Rules
  • Thai Court Disbands Opposition Party, Boosting Army-Backed Ruler
  • HNA Bond Euphoria Cools as Market Weighs State Takeover Talk

European equities initially kicked the final trading session of the week off with shallow losses before slipping further into negative territory (Eurostoxx -0.3%) as reports of increased coronavirus activity in South Korea continues to weigh on risk sentiment. Downticks in futures were observed alongside reports in Yonhap that South Korea reported a further 48 cases of the coronavirus, bringing the total to 204, before losses were trimmed in the wake of a firmer than expected services PMI from France and a pickup in the manufacturing metric from Germany; bourses remain in negative territory nonetheless. Sectors are broadly lower with energy and material names lagging their peers, whilst IT names are of the only sectors to trade higher, following yesterday’s underperformance yesterday. Individual movers include UniCredit (-3.4%) amid reports suggesting that CEO mustier has emerged as a potential frontrunner for the HSBC top job. Elsewhere, Pearson (-3.4%) are a notable laggard after posting disappointing pretax profit metrics, whilst Renault (-1.3%) shares opened lower amid reports of Nissan production delays in China.

Top European News

  • German Economy Faces Coronavirus Hit as Export Orders Sink
  • U.K. Economy Is Picking Up Despite Coronavirus Concerns
  • Riksbank Doesn’t Rule Out U-Turn on Negative Rates, Points to QE
  • SNB Isn’t Panicking About the Franc And Here’s a Reason Why

In FX, after a recent series of gains, the USD has paused for breath during today’s session and pulled back from the recent high of 99.915 to a current low of 99.593. The dollar’s decline has partially been a result of the firmer EUR, but also a resurgence in JPY as USD/JPY moves back below 112.00 to make a session low of 111.50 thus far. In terms of fundamental factors, not a great deal has changed in terms of the narrative surrounding Japans outlook since yesterday’s JPY declines. However, overnight saw commentary from the Japanese Finance Minister who said the government will respond to FX moves as needed, whilst the economy minister attributed recent JPY softness to the strength in the US economy. That said, Q4 growth metrics earlier in the week and concerns about the coronavirus-related drag on the Q1 outturn, remain in place. As such and as per inferences from ING yesterday, today’s move is more likely a by-product of exhaustion in the recent USD/JPY rally, with 100.00 in the DXY still yet to be crossed.

  • EUR – After finding support during yesterday’s session at 1.0778, EUR was lent a helping hand by aforementioned USD softness and encouraging PMI metrics from the Eurozone. Gains were stoked in early EU trade by French PMI metrics, which, although saw the manufacturing sector slip into contractionary territory (49.7 vs. Exp. 50.7, Prev. 51.1), was offset by a firmer services reading (52.6 vs. Exp. 51.3, Prev. 51.0) and therefore provided some pushback to concerns over potential cross-sector spillovers (i.e. manufacturing weakness into services). Gains for the EUR were cemented thereafter with EUR/USD reclaiming 1.0800 to the upside after a jump in the German manufacturing metric to 47.8 from 44.8 with the pair topping out at 1.0820 with the April 24th 2019 low of 1.0821 kicking in as resistance. In recent trade momentum for EUR has stuttered with the pair slipping back below 1.0800. Overall for the PMIs, the EZ-wide composite figure rose to 51.6 from 51.3 (Exp. 51.0) with Markit concluding that the data points were consistent with a quarterly GDP growth rate approaching 0.2%. As a note of caution, analysts at Pantheon Macroeconomics concludes that despite the strong headline, the release is effectively warning that the supply side is being choked, and if that continues, growth and employment eventually will take a hit.
  • GBP – Ahead of PMI metrics, GBP was granted some reprieve by declines in the USD as the pair reclaimed 1.2900 to the upside as investors awaited confirmation/rejection of the post-election ‘bounce’ in the UK economy. Upon the release, GBP was granted some further upside to breach 1.2925 (fib resistance and post-retail sales highs) as a marginal miss in the services component (53.3 vs. Exp. 53.4) was offset by an unexpected expansionary manufacturing print (51.9 vs. Exp. 49.7). Should gains for the GBP accelerate, technicians’ flag 1.2949 (Feb 13th low) as the next potential source of resistance. Overall Markit concluded that “the recent return to growth signalled by the manufacturing and services PMIs provides a clear indication that the UK economy is no longer flat on its back”. That said, as the EU squabbles over its negotiating mandate in trade talks with the UK, focus for the UK narrative, will at some stage, begin to tilt more towards trade talks at the beginning of next month.
  • AUD/NZD – AUD and NZD largely moved in tandem with the USD throughout a bulk of APAC session before succumbing to downside as the Chinese Commerce Official stated that he expects China’s Jan-Feb import and export growth to fall back notably. AUD/USD breached mild support at 0.6610 and gave up its 0.6600 handle to fall to an 11yr low, with the session trough currently at 0.6587; a break below this level could open up a test of the March 11th 2009 low of 0.6567, with further support below at 0.6513 (March 13th 2009 low). Its antipode counterpart, has suffered a similar fate with NZD/USD slipping below touted support at 0.6325 (11th and 12th November lows) ahead of the all-important psychological support at 0.6300; a move below this level could open up a test of the 17th October 2019 low of 0.6281.
  • SEK – Little traction in the Krona following the release of the account of the February meeting with EUR/SEK maintaining its 10.5777-10.61 range post-release. In terms of the content of the account, the Bank ultimately resides in a “wait-and-see” mode, as opined by Governor Ingves. That said, commentary from December dissenters Breman and Jansson drew some attention with the former noting that domestic and international factors and their impact on the Swedish economy could be underestimated, whilst the latter suggested it is currently highly improbable that a tighter monetary policy will become appropriate. Ultimately, several members were of the view that positive inflation surprises would not necessarily involve rates being raised earlier than forecast. Furthermore, as highlighted by Nordea, the account also suggests that the Riksbank would be more likely to turn towards the balance sheet as a course of stimulative action, as opposed to lowering rates.

In commodities, WTI and Brent prices are once again in the red, as sentiment has failed to recover from the broad sell-off in US hours; with multiple reasons for this being touted. Crude specific newsflow has been light this morning, focus for the complex has returned to demand concerns on reports of further virus cases in South Korea as well as the first few in Italy. As well as the demand narrative, attention is on geopolitical headlines emanating from Libya as Haftar has reportedly said he is prepared for a ceasefire under the condition of Turkish troops and mercenaries leaving the region. Turning to spot gold, which has continued its grind higher to fresh YTD highs of USD 1636.5/oz on the aforementioned deterioration in sentiment. From a technical perspective, there is little in the way of firm resistance until USD 1696.20/oz, which is the 22nd January 2013 high; as the yellow metal also derives support from a softer USD this morning. Elsewhere, base metals have failed to stage a firm recovery on the USD’s weakness this morning as the downside in sentiment overrides any potential gains.

US Event Calendar

  • 9:45am: Markit US Manufacturing PMI, est. 51.5, prior 51.9
  • 9:45am: Markit US Services PMI, est. 53.4, prior 53.4
  • 9:45am: Markit US Composite PMI, prior 53.3
  • 10am: Revisions: Existing Home Sales
  • 10am: Existing Home Sales, est. 5.44m, prior 5.54m
  • 10am: Existing Home Sales MoM, est. -1.81%, prior 3.6%

DB’s Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap

After a brief but sizeable risk off move yesterday that saw the S&P 500 move from positive territory to down more than a percent in the last half hour of European trading (close -0.38% and more detail later), today’s flash PMIs will be an important measure of how activity is shaping up in February in the heat of the Coronavirus crisis and shut downs.

Overnight Japan’s flash manufacturing PMI came in at 47.6 (vs. 48.8 in January), which marks the sharpest deterioration in conditions in more than seven years. The services PMI plunged back into contractionary territory at 46.7 (vs. 51.0 in January) bringing the composite PMI to 47.0 (vs. 50.1 in January). Joe Hayes, an economist at IHS Markit, flagged the impact on the services sector of reduced tourism due to the virus while saying that the “latest PMI data dash any hopes of a first quarter recovery in Japan and significantly raise the prospect of a technical recession in the world’s third largest economy.” We also saw Australia services PMI decline into contractionary territory at 48.4 from 50.6 in January, marking the lowest reading since the index began. However the manufacturing PMI was relatively stable at 49.8 (vs. 49.6 in January) bringing the composite PMI to 48.3 from 50.2 in January.

The flash PMI data today includes that for the Euro Area, France, Germany and the UK as well as the US this afternoon. Generally speaking the data in Europe is expected to see a drop of around half a point for the manufacturing prints and slightly less for services. Specifically for the Euro Area the manufacturing reading is expected to fall from 47.9 to 47.4 and the services from 52.5 to 52.3 although in fairness for the manufacturing reading outside of last month, that level would still be the highest since June last year. In the US the manufacturing print is expected to fall 0.4pts to 51.5 but the services reading to hold steady.

If you wanted to know how uncertain the impact will be on activity look no further than the range of estimates forming the consensus readings. For the Euro Area manufacturing print for example it’s anywhere from 45.5 to 48.1, so a range of 2.6pts. For the flash January print the range was 1.3pts and December just 0.9pts. In fact this is the highest range that we can find since August last year.

The latest on the virus is that South Korea reported 52 additional cases overnight bringing the total in the country to 156, a 5 times increase from earlier this week. Much of the new cases in South Korea are being reported in Daegu, where officials have shut down public facilities and advised residents to stay indoors. In China, confirmed cases now stand at 75,465 with deaths at 2,236. Also, raising concerns on the quality of reporting from China, Hubei earlier reported 411 additional cases, but the NHC said Hubei had 631 new cases and following this Hubei revised its reported number higher. On a more micro level, China’s Passenger Car Association said in a report that car sales plunged 92% during the first two weeks of February because of the virus outbreak. Elsewhere, the International Air Transport Association said yesterday that it expects the first annual decline in global passenger demand in 11 years as the assessment of the virus impact led it to shave c.4.7pp off of a passenger-growth forecast issued just two months ago, with almost all of the impact in the Asia-Pacific region. Global passenger demand is now seen contracting by -0.6% this year, compared with a December forecast for 4.1% growth, IATA said.

Overnight, the spread of the coronavirus outside of China is keeping markets in check with the Kospi (-1.50%) and Hang Seng (-0.89%) leading declines. The Nikkei (-0.39%) is also trading lower after erasing earlier gains while the Shanghai Comp (+0.36%) is trading up after a weak start perhaps on fresh stimulus hopes. Futures on the S&P 500 are down -0.36% and yields on 10yr USTs are down -2.5bps to 1.491% and trading below 1.5% for the first time since September. In keeping with the risk off, crude oil prices are down c. -0.70% this morning while spot gold prices are up +0.51%. As for other overnight data releases, Japan’s January CPI and Core CPI both came out in line with consensus at +0.7% yoy and +0.8% yoy respectively.

As for markets yesterday, a late US morning dip saw equities initially fall sharply from their recent highs before recovering most of the lost ground. The S&P 500 closed -0.38% with the NASDAQ -0.67%. The fundamental reason for the sell-off seemed to revolve around Coronavirus-related headlines. A central Beijing hospital reports 36 new cases (per China’s Global Times), a sharp increase from two weeks earlier and raising concerns around a super spreader event. The other market-moving headline was out of the virus’s epicenter, where the government in Hubei said it will extend the business shutdown until 10-Mar – more than 6 weeks after the Lunar New Year holiday was supposed to end. The more technical reason that was posited centered around the timing and volumes. Given that the Momentum factor was down greater than 1 std dev vs. Value up just over 1 std dev, it could have been an unwind of a big winning factor trade over the last year by a European trading program. S&P 500 futures volume over the 20 minute period starting at 11:30 AM ET as prices were accelerating to the lows, was over 50B notional and the largest volume observed in that ~25 minute period for the past 6 months. So it could have been a big trade. Either way, Technology stocks (down -1.04%) in particular were the biggest driver of the move lower, especially semiconductors, which finished down -1.53%.

Safe havens were well bid as a result. Indeed Gold was up another 0.50% last night and has now risen in five of the six last sessions. Over the same time frame the S&P 500 has been down -0.18%. Meanwhile US 10y yields were another -4.9bps lower last night with the curve flattening once more, 2s10s down to 12.8bps (c10bps this morning) meaning the curve has flattened for 6 consecutive sessions including this morning. 30 year yields were -5.2bps yesterday and are down a further -3bps this morning to an all-time low of 1.932%. Treasuries were stronger even after the Fed’s Clarida described the US economy as “solid” and the labour market “very strong and robust”. He also didn’t sound particularly concerned about the impact of the coronavirus with most of his comments sticking to the Committee’s narrative.

In other news, the data in the US yesterday included a very strong February Philly Fed index print (36.7 vs. 11.0 expected). That represented a bounce of 19.7pts from January and a reminder that the January reading itself was up 14.6pts from December. So that is the largest monthly rise since June 2009 and two-monthly rise since February 2002. A word of warning however that the warm weather this winter appears to be having an outsized impact on the data.

Elsewhere the latest weekly claims reading was up 4k to 210k but continues to remain historically low. Meanwhile the January leading index rose +0.8% mom versus expectations for +0.4%. In Europe the most significant data was the January retail sales figures for the UK where ex fuel sales rose a better than expected +1.6% mom (vs. +0.8% expected). That follow five consecutive months of essentially no retail sales growth in the UK so an encouraging sign. The other UK data was the latest CBI survey which showed an improvement of 4pts for total orders. Sterling closed at $1.288 yesterday, the lowest since late November.

In other news, the ECB released the accounts of the January ECB meeting yesterday, however there wasn’t a huge amount to take away. Our economists noted that the more positive tone around the (still negative) balance of risks and some greater confidence on the future normalisation of inflation were the main changes versus December. However, with the meeting coming at the time of a two-year peak in economic data surprises, this change is out of date now – with data surprises again turning negative, even before any impact of the coronavirus. The overall tone on policy is one where the bar for near-term policy changes is high.

This weekend Nevada will be the site of the third Democratic presidential primary which like Iowa is a caucus. This means more voting by moving around a gymnasium (or casino ballrooms) than by submitting a blind ballot. The Democratic Party in Nevada has taken steps to avoid their Iowan counterpart’s counting problems so hopefully we’ll have a clean and smooth process. Bernie Sanders is the overwhelming favourite with betting odds having the Senator at 88%. There have been very few high-quality state polls though. Given the low count of polls, there is a lot of uncertainty and the results could alter momentum or narratives going into South Carolina next week. Former Mayor Bloomberg may be written in at that point but he is not technically on the ballot, having entered the race too late.

Looking at the day ahead, the obvious focus will be the aforementioned PMIs in Europe this morning and the US this afternoon. Away from that we’ll also get January public sector net borrowing data for the UK, final January CPI revisions for the Euro Area and January existing home sales data in the US. Away from that the Fed’s Kaplan, Brainard, Clarida and Mester are all due to speak today while the ECB’s Lane and BoE’s Tenreyro are also speaking.

end

 

3A/ASIAN AFFAIRS

I)FRIDAY MORNING/ THURSDAY NIGHT: 

SHANGHAI CLOSED UP 9.52 POINTS OR 1.04%  //Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 300.35 POINTS OR 1.09%   /The Nikkei closed DOWN 92.41 POINTS OR 0.39%//Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED DOWN .434%

/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed DOWN  at 7.0316 /Oil UP TO 57.21 dollars per barrel for WTI and 64.13 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED MIXED//  ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN // LAST AT 7.0316 AGAINST THE DOLLAR. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN ON THE DOLLAR AT 7.0429 TRADE TALKS STALL//YUAN LEVELS GETTING DANGEROUSLY PAST 7:1//TRUMP INITIATES A NEW 25% TARIFFS FRIDAY/MAY 10/MAJOR PROBLEMS AT HUAWEI /CFO ARRESTED//CORONAVIRUS  : /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING ABOVE LEVEL OF OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFFSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST THE DOLLAR /TRADE DEAL PART I COMPLETE//STARTING PART II..TRUMP  RAISED RATES TO 25%

 

 

3 a./NORTH KOREA/ SOUTH KOREA

SOUTH KOREA/CORONAVIRUS UPDATE//THURSDAY NIGHT

Big important news last night:  South Korean Covid 19 cases explode after a super spreader event.  A South Korean went to 4 church services knowing she had a cold and wanted divine intervention to cure her.  This caused a massive explosion in South Korean cases

(zerohedge)

South Korean Coronavirus Cases Explode After “Super Spreader” Event

One day after South Korea reported its first coronavirus death and shortly after all of Daegu city’s 2.5 million residents were put on lock-down, the number of covid-19 cases in South Korea has exploded, with 52 new cases reported overnight, representing a third of all the nation’s cases.

After four largely uneventful weeks in which South Korea had confirmed just 30 cases, the number of cases has soared five fold in just three days, rising from 31 cases on Tuesday  to 156 on Friday (local time), in what appears to be a very aggressive exponential increase.

Notably, thirty-nine of the cases are related to a cluster at a church in Daegu, the city that “looks like a zombie apocalypse“,  according to a statement from Korea Centers for Disease Control.

 

Earlier in the day, officials said the city of Daegu was facing an “unprecedented crisis” after coronavirus infections that centred on a controversial “cult” church, linked to a branch of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus, surged over the past two days. The city of 2.5 million people, which is two hours south of the capital Seoul, was turned into a ghost town after health officials said the bulk of country’s 31 new cases announced on Thursday were linked to a branch of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus (and now another 39).

Mayor Kwon Young-jin made a televised address, urging citizens to wear masks and remain indoors while revealing his concerns that the contagion could rapidly overwhelm the city’s health infrastructure. “We are in an unprecedented crisis,” the mayor told reporters, unaware that the last thing he can afford to do in times like these is tell the truth.

He ordered the shutdown of all kindergartens and public libraries, according to Yonhap. Schools in the city were considering postponing the beginning of the spring term scheduled for early March. Shopping malls and movie theaters were also empty and the usually busy city streets were quiet. A concert featuring BTS and other K-pop stars that was set for Daegu Stadium on 8 March has been postponed.

The defense ministry banned troops stationed in Daegu from leaving their barracks and receiving guests. The US military imposed similar restrictions on its army base in the city, which houses thousands of troops, family members and civilian employees, curbing travel and closing schools and child care centers.

In what the Korean center for disease control calleda “super spreader” eventalmost half of the country’s total of 82 infections have been linked to a 61-year-old woman who worships at the Daegu church, which has often accused of being a cult.

 

Medical staff move a patient infected with the coronavirus in Daegu. Photograph: AP

She first developed a fever on 10 February but reportedly twice refused to be tested for the coronavirus on the grounds that she had not recently travelled abroad. She attended at least four services before being diagnosed. So far, almost 40 other members of the church have been confirmed as infected.

Shincheonji claims that its founder, Lee Man-hee, has donned the mantle of Jesus Christ and will take 144,000 people with him to Heaven, body and soul, on Judgement Day. And if the number of cases continues to grow exponentially, Judgment Day may be in early March.

Daegu’s municipal government said there were 1,001 Shincheonji members in the city, all of whom had been asked to self-quarantine, with 90 of them currently showing symptoms. Those who have symptoms “will be tested as soon as possible”, Kwon Young-jin said, urging stronger action from the government in Seoul and calling the national response “inadequate”.

“We plan to test all believers of that church and have asked them to stay at home isolated from their families.”

The situation was “very grave”, South Korean vice health minister Kim Kang-lip said at a separate briefing.

Shincheonji said on Thursday that it had closed down all its facilities nationwide.

“We are deeply sorry that because of one of our members, who thought of her condition as a cold because she had not travelled abroad, led to many in our church being infected and thereby caused concern to the local community,” it said in a statement.

Separately a man in his 60s from the neighboring Cheongdo county tested positive for the coronavirus after dying Wednesday following symptoms of pneumonia, authorities said. He was among 15 people found to be infected at a hospital.

* * *

Meanwhile, a few hundred kilometers west, China continues to pretend it is successfully containing the virus, although it apparently can’t even do that. One week after Beijing reported nearly 15,000 new cases after a change in the definition of “infection”, China reverted back to the original definition in hopes of drastically reducing the number of new cases and boosting people’s confidence it was successfully containing the pandemic. The result was that the number of new cases on Feb 19 was just 391, one of the lowest since the start of the pandemic, and a far cry from the 15,000 new cases reported a week earlier. Alas, in its ambition to get people back to work, the case number was too low and nobody believed it, resulting in even greater self-quarantining as China’s population increasingly believes that Beijing is no longer telling it the truth and is willing to sacrifice the population just so some factories can resume production,

Meanwhile, as China bounces around between one definition and another, in hopes of finding some “just right” middle ground between reporting too many cases and sparking a market crash, or too few cases and leading to social violence as people on the ground certainly know just how bad it truly is, Beijing is now losing all credibility and even China’s best friend in the US, Bloomberg, writes that “Hubei Changes Virus Count Method With Data Mistrust Growing.” This happened after on Thursday China reported that it had just 349 additional confirmed cases, compared with almost 1,700 additional cases from the day before; the number then doubled to 889 on Friday as China appears to have given up on any pretense at reporting data objectively.

The outcome appears to be a recreating of the famous surgery scene from Spice Like Us, where China comes up with some made up number, gauges the market’s and media’s reaction, and then China offers a totally opposite number on the next day as it scramble to give everyone what they want while creating the fiction that it is in control.

The irony, of course, is that the more China manipulates the data, the less anyone will believe a positive outcome for the epidemic and will instead claim that this is just the result of Chinese propaganda: “It points to a rather concerning confusion over how best to officially report the number of cases, leading to a loss of confidence in the true numbers,” said Jeffrey Halley, a Singapore-based senior market analyst with Oanda Asia Pacific Pte. “That could mean that internationally, the rest of the world keeps China in lockdown for longer, which will not be good for the ‘V-shaped recovery’ projections.”

As reported previously, the latest changes cast doubt over whether the drop in new cases – a positive sign that the epidemic is coming under control at the epicenter – is actually happening. In recent days, China’s leaders have scrambled to project optimism over the outbreak, which has shut down large parts of its economy and plunged industries from retail to aviation into crisis. Companies and factories across China are now being urged to re-start economic activity, while Chinese premier Li Keqiang said on Monday that the outbreak is on “a positive trend.”

曾錚 Jennifer Zeng@jenniferatntd

check points cancelled as gov. encourages people to go back to work, at Xingtai in province.
为配合复工,邢台19个检查点全撤了.
Click here for more 更多视频在这里: http://bit.ly/2uBfJPr

Embedded video

What Li meant is that Beijing is willing to sacrifice healthy citizens by commingling them with potentially infected ones, if it means that China’s GDP, already set for a record plunge, can be pushed up just a bit. Of course, none of this is lost on the people, and in a country where the biggest morbid fear is one where the middle class rises up and overthrows the communist parasites in charge, there is a distinct possibility that by telegraphing to the people just how worthless their lives are to Beijing, the instead of delivering a “positive trend” for the outbreak, China’s ruthless rulers may soon be on the receiving end of what happens when 1.4 billion Chinese grab the pitchforks and go after those who are willing to risk their lives if only it means that the “quota met” bonus payment for 2020 is made.

END

 

b) REPORT ON JAPAN

 

3 C CHINA

CHINA/PMI DEVASTATING!!

This is devastating: one major bank expects China’s PMI to drop  to 30 or below.  Remember than below 50 is contraction of an economy.  A level of 30 is depression!

(zerohedge)

“Devastating Impact”: One Bank Expects China’s PMI To Crater As Low As 30

To those who have been following our series of high-frequency, daily indicators of China’s economy, it will probably not come as a surprise that the world’s second biggest economy has ground to a halt, its GDP set to post the first negative print in modern history. To everyone else who is just now catching up, we have some news: it’s going to be bad.

Ahead of official Chinese economic data which will soon start capturing the period when the coronavirus hit the nation, Nomura’s Chief China economist Ting Lu noted that China’s Emerging Industries PMI (EPMI), which gauges momentum in the country’s high-tech industries and is closely correlated with official manufacturing PMI, slumped to 29.9 in February (from 50.1 in January!), its lowest-print on record (introduced Jan ’14), which as Nomura’s Charlie McElligott writes “is pure reflection of the devastating impact of the COVID-19 outbreak.

What does this mean for the closely followed China manufacturing PMI? As McElligott writes, “even adjusting for seasonality and expected progress in business resumption in the coming week, we estimate the official manufacturing PMI could drop to a range of 30-40 in Feb.”

And the punchline from Ting:

“We believe markets might underestimate the scale of the current growth slump. Due to a slower-than-expected rate of business resumption, we have cut our year-on-year Q1 real GDP growth forecast to 3.0% and expect Beijing to ramp up policy easing measures in coming months. That said, the likelihood of another round of massive stimulus appears low as policy space remains limited.

The last bolded sentence confirms what we said on Sunday, and even though China has already launched what has been a generous deployment of various stimuli

… it explains why some were disappointed after the PBOC only incrementally eased policy overnight, lowering the benchmark 1Y Loan Prime Rate to 4.05% (from 4.15%) and the 5Y rate to 4.75% (from 4.80%) – not pursuing a full-blown overnight rate cut as some had expected – while at the same time stating that it will work to promote consumption and investment to boost domestic demand; the PBOC did offset some of this disappointment with the biggest ever monthly injection in Total Social Financing  credit as discussed earlier…

… but as McElligott concludes, “the negligible decline in the 5Y rate shows that authorities remain concerned about easing property policy and that, for now, they are attempting to maneuver within “conventional” policy.”

In other words, while the market remains convinced that Beijing with unleash even more stimulus to force the V-shaped rebound that has been priced in for Q2 and onward, also explaining the relentless bid for risk assets, this appears unlikely to happen any time soon, especially while China is still battling to contain the coronavirus, because as Jefferies strategist Sean Darby warned, “markets have taken a step back because the authorities won’t do any major stimulus until they are completely sure the virus has stopped, because there’s no point in doing it when people are sitting at home.”

END
CHINA/AUTO SALES
This ought to shake up an economy:  Chinese auto sales plunge by a whopping 92%
(Mish Shedlock/Mishtalk)

With Half Of China Locked Up, Car Sales Plunge 92%

Authored by Mike Shedlock via MishTalk,

Car sales in China for the first two weeks in February are down 92% from a year ago.

When you are locked in your home for weeks, with no income, and people are dying in the streets, guess what happens to retail sales.

Bloomberg reports China Car Sales Tumble 92% in First Half of February on Virus

China car sales plunged 92% during the first two weeks of February in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, according to the China Passenger Car Association. It was even worse in the first week, with nationwide sales tumbling 96% to a daily average of only 811 units, PCA said in a report released earlier this week. Deliveries this month may slump by about 70%, resulting in a 40% drop in the first two months of 2020, it said. The figures exclude minivans. The situation is expected to improve in the third week of February compared with the start of the month, PCA Secretary General Cui Dongshu said in an interview on Friday.

Improvement Expected

To what?

From here, down 50% or even 90% is an “improvement”

People have had no income for weeks.

I highly doubt buying cars is on their minds.

Economically Speaking

From an economic standpoint, January saw the Largest Shipping Decline Since 2009 and That’s Before Coronavirus impact hit.

Supply chain disruptions have barely started.

It is impossible to estimate the full impact as long as cases are spreading. Worse yet, cases are exponentially rising outside of China.

With that in mind, there’s Little Chance of Coronavirus Containment in South Korea where cases are rising exponentially.

 

Talk of car sales “improvement” seems more than a bit ridiculous.

end
CHINA //CORONAVIRUS///DRONES
China desperating tries to fight the virus outbreak using drones, robots and spray
(zerohedge)

China Deploys Agricultural Robots And Drones To Fight Virus Outbreak

XAG Co., Ltd. was selected by the Chinese government late last month for the deployment of its ground-based robots and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) to spray powerful disinfectants across public places in cities where the Covid-19 outbreak is the worse.

XAG is using a fleet of R80 Agricultural Utility Vehicle robots with 80-liter (21 gallons) sprayers for ground-based disinfectant operations across public places.

The company tweeted several pictures of the R80 in action, spraying disinfectant across a “parking lot outside the office block in Guangzhou.”

XAG@XAG_official

Our farm R80 has stepped forward to join the operation, disinfecting parking lot outside the office block in Guangzhou. Lightweight, flexible to traverse small districts, R80 can disinfect an area of up to 64800 square metres per hour, with no dead ends.

View image on TwitterView image on Twitter

Here’s a video of the robot spraying disinfectant in an ambulance, which presumably had a virus-infected patient beforehand. The robots are used to spray disinfectants in areas where it’s too dangerous for humans, considering the virus is airborne and extremely contagious.

XAG@XAG_official

We have adapted our R80 AUV into an epidemic prevention to spray disinfectant in public spaces, working with to fight the new . Video shows how R80 was being deployed in hospital to precisely disinfect ambulance inside and out.

Embedded video

XAG also deployed the “first-ever ground-to-air disinfection solution.”

XAG@XAG_official

The first-ever ground-to-air disinfection solution. The R80 disinfected epidemic prevention vehicles and quarantine area at hospital, while the autonomous cooperated from the air, reducing the risks of human exposure to both virus and disinfectant.

View image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on Twitter

Justin Gong, vice president and co-founder of XAG, said the ground-based drones and UAVs had established a “three dimensional and integrated” disinfection system.

Gong said the robots and UAVs offer a unique advantage to cover a wide area while leaving first responders out of harm’s way.

He said virus containment operations would be mainly across outdoor public places and those communities that have confirmed or suspected cases of the virus.

Gong said operations would also include disinfecting medical and epidemic prevention vehicles, hospitals, and other areas where virus-infected people are being housed.

Last month, we noted how China was using DJI drones with front-mounted speakers, to fly around towns and yell at anyone who wasn’t wearing a mask.

Global Times

@globaltimesnews

Walking around without a protective face mask? Well, you can’t avoid these sharp-tongued drones! Many village and cities in China are using drones equipped with speakers to patrol during the outbreak.

Embedded video

Other reports included Chinese towns deploying agriculture drones with 19 liters (5 gallons) sprayers.

China is using advanced technology to fight a virus that could wind up collapsing its economy.

end
CHINA/GLOBE/CORONAVIRUS
horrifying news:
FIRST, I told you that the virus can mutate 3 times and thus it is possible that you could be re infected
That has borne out to be true as a Chengdu patient cured earlier on has been reinfected.
SECOND:  and this is really really scary:  the virus can remain dormant or latent for 42 days before showing damaging effects.
So our patient from Chengdu may not have been cured but had the virus dormant in his body or, he was re infected.
THIRD: THIS IS VERY VERY SCARY!!

Chinese Coronavirus Patient Reinfected 10 Days After Leaving Hospital

As we first reported on Monday, shortly after the US decided to break the quarantine surrounding the Diamond Princess cruise ship which had emerged as the single-biggest locus of coronavirus cases outside of China, hundreds of weary, homesick Americans were on their way home. And as more than a dozen buses sat on the tarmac at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport with 328 Americans wearing surgical masks and gloves inside, awaiting anxiously to fly home after weeks in quarantine aboard the Diamond Princess, U.S. officials wrestled with troubling news: new test results showed that 14 passengers were infected with the virus. The problem: the U.S. State Department had promised that no one with the infection would be allowed to board the planes.

A decision had to be made. Let them all fly? Or leave them behind in Japanese hospitals? At this point, according to the Washington Post, a fierce debate broke out in Washington, where it was still Sunday afternoon: The State Department and a top Trump administration health official wanted to forge ahead. The infected passengers had no symptoms and could be segregated on the plane in a plastic-lined enclosure (something we mocked on Monday when we said we can only hope that “plastic divider” was enough to keep the virus confined to its own class aboard the aircraft.”). At this point, officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention disagreed, contending they could still spread the virus. The CDC believed the 14 should not be flown back with uninfected passengers.

“It was like the worst nightmare,” said a senior U.S. official involved in the decision, speaking on the condition of anonymity to describe private conversations. “Quite frankly, the alternative could have been pulling grandma out in the pouring rain, and that would have been bad, too.”

In the end, the State Department won the argument. But unhappy CDC officials demanded to be left out of the news release that explained that infected people were being flown back to the United States — a move that would nearly double the number of known coronavirus cases in this country.

In retrospect, the CDC will soon be proven correct in its dire warning that repatriating a full plane of both infected and healthy individuals could be a catastrophic error, because it now appears that not only can the virus remain latent for as long as 42 days, 4 weeks longer than traditionally assumed, resulting in numerous false negative cases as infected carrier slip across borders undetected, but far more ominously, it now appears that the diseases can re-infect recently “cured” patients, because as Taiwan News reportsa Chinese patient who just recovered from the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) has been infected for the second time in the province of Sichuan, according to local health officials.

On Wednesday (Feb. 19), the People’s Daily reported that a man in Sichuan’s capital Chengdu had tested positive for the virus during a regular check-up just ten days after being discharged from the hospital. The report said he had previously been cleared of the virus by medical staff.

The Sichuan Health Commission confirmed the news on Friday (Feb. 21) and issued a community warning announcement in the patient’s neighborhood. The announcement said that the man and his family had been transported to a nearby health facility on Thursday morning (Feb. 20) and that health officials had sanitized the entire community, reported Liberty Times.

According to ETtoday, the patient and his family had been under home quarantine and had not left the house since Feb. 10. The authorities are still investigating the cause of the reinfection.

The news has stirred up heated reactions from Chinese netizens. Some suspect that the hospital discharged the man before he was fully recovered, and many have expressed concern about the worsening epidemic.

Several doctors from Wuhan, the epicenter of COVID-19, said last week that it is possible for recovered patients to contract the virus a second time. They warned that a recurring infection could be even more damaging to a patient’s body and that the tests are susceptible to false negatives.

Needless to say, with the US now repatriating over a dozen coronavirus-infected individuals, it will be absolutely critical to keep a close eye on any deemed healthy or cured, because it now appears that not only can the virus stay latent for nearly a month longer than previously expected, but cured patients can also get reinfected.

And all of this is probably why, in a far more gloomier sounding press conference, today the CDC warned that:

  • CDC SAYS CORONAVIRUS IS A TREMENDOUS PUBLIC HEALTH THREAT, FUTURE HUMAN TO HUMAN TRANSMISSION IN THE U.S IS VERY POSSIBLE AND EVEN LIKELY

In short, it’s only a matter of time before the pandemic, which is already “contained” in nearly 30 cases in the US as of this moment, becomes uncontained, and the exponential chart of cases away from China, includes the US in it.

 

h/t @jodigraphics15
end
CHINA/SOUTH KOREA/CORONAVIRUS UPDATE/LATE AFTERNOON

China Forced To Revise Number Of Virus Cases Sharply Higher After Hubei Caught Undercounting New Infections

China’s desperate attempts to manipulate coronavirus “data” lower to ease public fears about a runaway pandemic and get more people back to work, are crossing into the outright laughable, if not surreal.

As a reminder, earlier this week, China’s Hubei province where the quarantined epicenter of the covid-19 epidemic, Wuhan, is located, once again changed the definition of a coronavirus “infection” in pursuit of a lower number of new cases by defining a case as “confirmed” if it stems from a positive result in a nucleic acid test, not if it was clinically diagnosed by physicians, a reversal of the definition change it adopted just  a week earlier which resulted in the biggest daily increase yet, when nearly 15,000 new cases were reported. Sure enough, this led to a plunge in new cases, with Hubei reporting just 411 new cases on Thursday and 349 new cases on Friday, sharply lower from the 1,000+ cases reported on previous days.

There is just one problem: at the same time as Hubei was priding itself in its sharp drop off in “confirmed” cases (carefully ‘doctored’ definition of new cases notwithstanding), a new breakout was been observed in the local Hubei prison system. And, problematically, for the brand new leadership of the Hubei Health Commission, it appeared that none of these cases were actually accounted for in the official province-level data.

Oops.

 

So what does Hubei do? Well, late on Friday the province which has now lost all credibility in the “data” it is reporting, was forced to once again revise the data, higher of course, to account for the “missing” prison cases.

Specifically, per a press release late on Friday, Hubei did the following:

  • It revised the number of new “confirmed” cases on Thursday upward to 631 from 411 after including 220 cases in the local prison system (source).
  • It revised the number of new “confirmed” cases on Wednesday upward to 775 from 349, after accounting for the previously unaccounted for cases in the local prison system (source)

And visually:

Then, just to make sure the confusion is complete, Hubei also said that in addition to prison cases that had been previously unaccounted for, the provincial health system said some cities of the province “had deducted from their Feb. 19 count the number of previously confirmed cases per the nation’s revised guidelines published Feb. 18; their wrong method was discovered Feb. 20 and asked to stop.”

As a result of all these changes, the cumulative number of total cases rose from 62,442 reported initially to 62,662 initially, and then one day later, the revision was from 62,662 to 63,008 for Feb 20.

For those curious, here is the original google-translated revisions from the Hubei website:

From 2 Yue 13 date, according to the National Health Commission Office of Health, the State Pharmaceutical Administration Office issued the “novel coronavirus pneumonia treatment program (Trial Fifth Edition)”, Hubei Province, will be clinically diagnosed cases of confirmed cases were all included in the statistics Announcement and treatment. 2 Yue 18 , the National Health Commission Office of Health, the State Pharmaceutical Administration and the Office of the issuance of “novel coronavirus pneumonia treatment program (Trial Sixth Edition)”, the fifth edition of the relative treatment program, the original clinically diagnosed cases in Hubei Province The category was cancelled. 2 Yue 19 days, some cities and states clinically diagnosed cases of early reports were revised according to the sixth edition of treatment programs, and subtract some of the confirmed cases. 2 Yue 20 Ri detection and timely stop this wrong practice. Now 2 Yue 19 the number of cases date back to re-add and subtract the confirmed cases, and the number of new cases of the day were revised. 2 Yue 19 Ri 0-24 , the province’s new confirmed cases of 349 Li revised to 775 cases, the cumulative number of confirmed cases of the 62031 Li revised to 62 457 cases. Meanwhile, as of 2 Yue 20 Ri 24When the province’s total number of confirmed cases from 62,662 revised cases were 63088 cases.

The bottom line is simple: anyone trusting any “data” from either Hubei in particular, or China in general, is a fool as each and every day is now an exercise in goalseeking cases to make it appears that China is regaining control over the pandemic but not at a rate that is too silly, which is what happened on the 19th, when all of China reported just 391 new cases, a laughable drop from the nearly 15 thousand new cases reported a week earlier.

The goal is simple: restore confidence among the general population that Beijing has the disease under control.

The irony, of course, is that the more China manipulates the data, the less anyone will believe a positive outcome for the epidemic and will instead claim that this is just the result of Chinese propaganda: “It points to a rather concerning confusion over how best to officially report the number of cases, leading to a loss of confidence in the true numbers,” said Jeffrey Halley, a Singapore-based senior market analyst with Oanda Asia Pacific Pte. “That could mean that internationally, the rest of the world keeps China in lockdown for longer, which will not be good for the ‘V-shaped recovery’ projections.”

And so China’s scrambles to goal seek its proapaganda number, the world’s attention has shifted to what has emerged as the second coronavirus hotspot, that of Daegu in South Korea, where the number of cases is certainly not doctored, pardon the terrible pun, and where there is a truly exponential increase in new cases, which are now doubling with every passing day in a terrible, if accurate, representation of what indeed happens when there is a viral epidemic.

Needless to say, if the South Korea model is accurate, it is safe to say that as of this moment, there are tens of millions of infected Chinese, which however Beijing will keep a secret until it is unable to do so any longer. That moment may be approaching: as the Global Times reports, Wuhan, the epicenter of the novel coronavirus outbreak, plans to build another 19 makeshift hospitals to receive more infected patients, local authorities said Friday. Upon their completion, all the makeshift hospitals in Wuhan are expected to offer 30,000 beds on Feb. 25, said Hu Yabo, deputy mayor of Wuhan at a press briefing on epidemic prevention and control.

To date, Wuhan has converted 13 existing venues into temporary hospitals, with a total of 13,348 beds, and about 9,313 beds have been put into use to treat patients with mild symptoms, said Hu.

And in a bizarre twist, Hu added that to improve their medical treatment capability, every makeshift hospital will be supplied with CT scanners and other medical equipment including ECG monitors.

But wait, didn’t Hubei just change the definition of an “infection” to remove those cases confirmed with a CT scanner? Why is Wuhan rushing to add those scanners if their “confirmation” of a case is irrelevant?

The answer of course, is obvious: there is an order of magnitude more cases in Hubei – and China – than is officially reported, although what that number is the world’s population will likely never know and instead it will have to rely on proxy indicators such as what is going on in South Korea to get an accurate assessment of just how bad, and deadly, the coronavirus pandemic truly is.

One final point: according to the Global Times, about 72 medical teams from other regions of China have been dispatched to these temporary hospitals to aid local colleagues to treat patients and contain the virus spread. Would China be doing this if the epidemic in Hubei was about to be “contained”? We leave the obvious answer to our readers.

END

ROBERT TO ME: EMAIL:
Early indications are that today, Friday China started to experience bank runs as people rushed to take out savings from banks forcing bank closure. Do not know for certain whether it is bank wide or just certain branches who were overwhelmed.  If indeed this is confirmed in days ahead and reported on mass media, China is really headed for a financial fall. Remembering, that half of China is under quarantine. And if not reported, if indeed true the banks outside of China already know and will by default shun any new China credit. And their shadow banking business if it was not  upside certainly is now.
Any optimism about an early and orderly return to production is gone. And whether China centric businesses experience a lengthy decline becomes reality.
So if you need a new device, get one while the specials are still on as the supply chain from China will undergo a lengthy restructuring. And by summer specials will be gone.
And if this turns out to be a national bank run, it will be interesting to see how China will pay for its’ goods as a reset of their currency will be forced upon them.
And the spill over from this will affect the world in trade flows and capital flows. As I have written before the more astute companies are already taking steps to realign supply chains to other locals to bypass China. At the same time those parties who were reliant on continued China focused trade will experience massive losses not just on future business but on being able to collect on past shipments as everything will be “force majeure”.
The hints of infighting in the papers over the inability to contain the Coronavirus is nothing to the infighting that likely is coming over true bank runs. And no doubt, this contagion will spill over all of China’s trade relationships.Cheers
Robert

4/EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

UK/SHARIA LAW

Interesting:  the high court in England has ruled that Sharia marriages are void under English law

(Kern/Gatestone)

UK Court: Sharia Marriages Not Valid Under English Law

Authored by Soeren Kern via The Gatestone Institute,

The Court of Appeal, the second-highest court in England and Wales after the Supreme Court, has ruled that the Islamic marriage contract, known as nikah in Arabic, is not valid under English law.

The landmark ruling has far-reaching implications. On the one hand, the decision strikes a blow against efforts to enshrine this aspect of Sharia law into the British legal system. On the other hand, it leaves potentially thousands of Muslim women in Britain without legal recourse in the case of divorce.

The case involves an estranged couple, Nasreen Akhter and Mohammed Shabaz Khan, both of Pakistani heritage, who took part in a nikah ceremony officiated by an imam in front of 150 guests at a restaurant in London in December 1998.

In November 2016, Akhter, a 48-year-old attorney, filed for a divorce, allegedly because Khan wanted to take a second wife. Khan, a 48-year-old property developer, tried to block Akhter’s divorce application on the basis that they were not legally married under English law. Khan said that they were married “under Sharia law only” and sued to prevent Akhtar from claiming money or property from him in the same way a legally married spouse could.

Akhter said that the couple, who have four children, intended to follow the nikah with a civil marriage ceremony that would be compliant with English law. No civil ceremony ever took place, however, because, according to Akhter, Khan refused.

On July 31, 2018, the London-based Family Division of the High Court ruled that the nikah fell within the scope of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973, which establishes three categories of marriage: valid, void and non-marriage. Valid marriages may be ended by a decree of divorce; void marriages may be ended by a decree of nullity; non-marriages cannot be legally ended because legally the marriage never existed.

The high court determined that the Akhter-Khan marriage was a “void marriage” because it had been “entered into in disregard of certain requirements as to the formation of marriage.” It ruled that Akhtar was therefore entitled to a “decree of nullity of marriage.”

The Attorney General, on behalf of the British government, filed an appeal on the basis that it was wrong to recognize the marriage as being “void” rather than a “non-marriage.”

On February 14, 2020, the London-based Court of Appeals overturned the High Court’s decision and ruled that nikah marriages are “non-marriages” within the scope of English law. In its ruling, the court explained:

“The Court of Appeal finds that the December 1998 nikah ceremony did not create a void marriage because it was a non-qualifying ceremony. The parties were not marrying ‘under the provisions’ of English law (Part II of the Marriage Act 1949). The ceremony was not performed in a registered building. Moreover, no notice had been given to the superintendent registrar, no certificates had been issued, and no registrar or authorized person was present at the ceremony. Further, the parties knew that the ceremony had no legal effect and that they would need to undertake another ceremony that did comply with the relevant requirements in order to be validly married. The determination of whether a marriage is void or not cannot, in the Court’s view, be dependent on future events, such as the intention to undertake another ceremony or whether there are children.

“There is no justification for treating the civil ceremony, which the parties intended to undertake, as having in fact taken place, when it never did. This might result in a party being married even if they change their mind part way through the process of formalizing the marriage. That would be inconsistent with the abolition of the right to sue for breach of an agreement to marry by Section 1 of the Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1970. The parties’ intentions cannot change what would otherwise be a non-qualifying ceremony into one which is within the scope of the Marriage Act 1949.”

The Court of Appeals added: “It is not difficult for parties who want to be legally married to achieve that status.”

The ruling, which Akhter presumably will appeal at the Supreme Court, has been greeted with outrage by activists who argue that thousands of Muslim women in Britain now have no legal rights when it comes to divorce.

In a press release, Southall Black Sisters, an advocacy group for South Asian women, said:

“We sought to inform the Court of Appeal that many minority women, especially Muslim women, are deceived or coerced by abusive husbands into only having a religious marriage, which deprives them of their financial rights when the marriage breaks down….

“The Court found that ‘it is not difficult for parties who want to be legally married to achieve that status.’ But this disregards the accounts of many minority women, who have great difficulty in obtaining that status in the context of domestic abuse, patriarchal family dynamics and considerable power imbalances….

“Today’s judgment will force Muslim and other women to turn to Sharia ‘courts’ that already cause significant harm to women and children for remedies because they are now locked out of the civil justice system.”

In November 2017, a survey carried out for a Channel 4 documentary — The Truth About Muslim Marriage — found that nearly all married Muslim women in Britain have had a nikah, but more than 60% had not gone through a separate civil ceremony which would make the marriage legal under British law.

In February 2018, an independent review of the application of Sharia law in England and Wales, commissioned by Theresa May in May 2016 when she was home secretary, recommended changes to the Marriage Act 1949 and the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 that would require Muslims to conduct civil marriages before or at the same time as the nikah ceremony. This would bring Islamic marriage in line with Christian and Jewish marriage in the eyes of British law. The report stated:

“By linking Islamic marriage to civil marriage, it ensures that a greater number of women will have the full protection afforded to them in family law and the right to a civil divorce, lessening the need to attend and simplifying the decision process of Sharia councils.”

The review added:

“The panel’s opinion is that the evidence shows that cultural change is required within Muslim communities so that communities acknowledge women’s rights in civil law, especially in areas of marriage and divorce. Awareness campaigns, educational programs and other similar measures should be put in place to educate and inform women of their rights and responsibilities, including the need to highlight the legal protection civilly registered marriages provide.”

Finally, the panel recommended that the government create a new agency to regulate Sharia courts and thus legitimize them:

“That body would design a code of practice for Sharia councils to accept and implement. There would, of course, be a one-off cost to the government of establishing this body but subsequently the system would be self-regulatory.”

In March 2018, then Secretary of State Sajid Javid, in a Green Paper titled, “Integrated Communities Strategy,” responded:

“We welcome the independent review into the application of Sharia law in England and Wales. Couples from faith communities have long been able to enter a legally recognized marriage through a religious ceremony if the requirements of the law are met.

“However, we share the concern raised in the review that some couples may marry in a way that does not give them the legal protections available to others in a civilly registered marriage. We are also concerned by reports of women being discriminated against and treated unfairly by some religious councils.

“The government is supportive in principle of the requirement that civil marriages are conducted before or at the same time as religious ceremonies. Therefore, the government will explore the legal and practical challenges of limited reform relating to the law on marriage and religious weddings.

“The government considers that the review’s proposal to create a state-facilitated or endorsed regulation scheme for Sharia councils would confer upon them legitimacy as alternative forms of dispute resolution. The government does not consider there to be a role for the state to act in this way.”

In January 2019, the Council of Europe (COE), the continent’s leading human rights organization, raised concerns about the role of Sharia courts in family, inheritance and commercial law in Britain. It called for the government to remove obstacles that stop Muslim women from accessing justice:

“Although they are not considered part of the British legal system, Sharia councils attempt to provide a form of alternative dispute resolution, whereby members of the Muslim community, sometimes voluntarily, often under considerable social pressure, accept their religious jurisdiction mainly in marital issues and Islamic divorce proceedings but also in matters relating to inheritance and Islamic commercial contracts. The Assembly is concerned that the rulings of the Sharia councils clearly discriminate against women in divorce and inheritance cases.”

The COE also set a deadline of June 2020 for the UK to report back on reviewing the Marriage Act, which would make it a legal requirement for Muslim couples to undergo civil marriages — which is currently required for Christian and Jewish marriages.

A Home Office spokesperson responded to the COE resolution:

“Sharia law does not form any part of the law in England and Wales. Regardless of religious belief, we are all equal before the law. Where Sharia councils exist, they must abide by the law.

“Laws are in place to protect the rights of women and prevent discrimination, and we will work with the appropriate authorities to ensure these laws are being enforced fully and effectively.”

As of now, neither the British government, nor the British Parliament has introduced legislation that would require Muslims to conduct civil marriages before or at the same time as the nikah ceremony.

The Court of Appeal’s ruling does, however, put a brake on the further encroachment of Sharia law into the British legal system. The court’s decision effectively reaffirms the principle that immigrants who settle in Britain must conform to British law, rather than the other way around.

END

5. RUSSIAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN AFFAIRS

LEBANON/CLOSE TO DEFAULT

Lebanon is now close to bankruptcy.  They must severe all relations with Hezbollah to survive as a nation

(zerohedge)

“A Bond Yield Soars Over 1,000%”: Lebanon Bonds Savaged Ahead Of Imminent Maturity

Though international financial press has tended to pay little attention to distressed Lebanon, this week was different as the country’s dollar-denominated bonds maturing next month were savaged in their worst day on record.

A bond yield soars to more than 1,000%? It just happened with Lebanon,” Bloomberg reported. It’s next maturing Eurobond, $1.2 billion of notes due on March 9, plunged 17 cents on the dollar Wednesday to 55 cents, which sent its yield to maturity (which is in less than 3 weeks) soaring above 1,700%.

 

Beirut, Lebanon. Image source: Alamy/The Guardian

The tiny and still protest-racked Middle East country further has a $700m Eurobond due to mature in April, and an additional $600m repayment due in June.

Most of Lebanon’s other Eurobonds have fallen to below 35 cents, while its five-year credit-default swaps hover around 12,730 basis points, the highest in the world,” Bloomberg reported further.

Given foreign currency deposit inflows have dried up, and a shortfall of dollars has fueled the crisis — evenpreventing banks from allowing clients to access their cash for the past months, defaulting on the eurobonds for the first time increasingly looks to be the only optionas Lebanon continues to precariously defy financial gravity.

Bloomberg also said Beirut is now looking into the sale of bonds by local banks to foreign investors.  Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri has further floated debt restructuring as the best solution for looming Eurobond maturities.

Lebanon’s banking association urged Lebanese President Michel Aoun on Thursday to approach the crisis in “technical way far from politics” — as losses and piling pressure continues on banks.

Alison Meuse

@AliTahmizian

“Ashmore (which has amassed a more than $1bn position in Lebanon’s short-dated bonds) is trying to support their position in what is effectively a bankrupt country,” said one of the investors. https://www.ft.com/content/98a75182-4f24-11ea-95a0-43d18ec715f5 

Foreign investors in ‘heated’ row over Lebanese debt

Lebanon’s Al-Akhbar newspaper reported this week that banks including Citigroup Inc., Rothschild & Co. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. are being reached out to for technical advice on how the country should handle the imminent crisis.

An International Monetary Fund team is also now in Beirut for consultations and to advise on a way forward in the crisis. If the IMF’s recent “experience” with handling Argentina’s ongoing pre-default crisis is any indication, expect disaster.

END
SAUDI ARABIA/IRAN/YEMEN
Iranian backed Houthi’s fire sophisticated missile at Saudi Arabia Aramco facility.  Defense systems knocked the  missile out of the sky
(zerohedge)

Houthi Missiles Target Aramco Facility Just After Pompeo Arrives In Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia’s air defense Patriot missile systems were active at the coastal city of Yanbu in the early Friday morning hours after ballistic missiles were inbound, believed launched by Shia Houthi rebels out of Yemen.

Crucially, the Red Sea city of Yanbu is site of a large state-owned Saudi Aramco oil refinery, the likely intended target given the prior Sept.14 large scale attack on Aramco facilities which was also claimed by the Houthis.

CNW@ConflictsW

Another video of the air defense launches. So far it seems all missiles were intercepted

https://twitter.com/BeeroBero/status/1230610772151197706/video/1 

Yanbu is nearly 600 miles from Yemen, meaning sophisticated missile systems were used – likely the Burkan 2 – which in the past Washington has accused Iran of supplying.

Spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition, Col. Turki Al-Maliki, was cited in the Saudi Press Agency as saying the launch originated in Yemen’s capital of Sanaa, but that Patriot anti-air missiles intercepted the rockets.

Aleph 🕯️ א@no_itsmyturn

Madinat Yanbu’ as Sina’iyah
Initial reports indicate that 🇸🇦 has intercepted 3 missiles.

Embedded video

Al-Maliki furhter blamed the Houthi rebels for targeting “cities and civilians”. Sanaa remains under control of the Houthis after years of civil war which has witnessed Saudi and US military intervention against them since 2015.

Sam

@Samir_Madani

A missile intercept by forces in just two hours ago. Yanbu is located by the Red Sea and is the largest oil terminal on that coastline. Exports a couple of million barrels per day mostly via the Suez Canal for delivery to Europe and North America.

Embedded video

“The Royal Saudi Air Defense intercepted ballistic missiles launched by the terrorist Iran-backed Houthi militia towards Saudi cities,” the kingdom said in the statement.

“The missiles were launched in a systematic, deliberate manner to target cities and civilians, which is a flagrant defiance of the International Humanitarian Law.”

علي العراقي@AliAlIRAQ1990

As Maleki confirms, missiles were launched from Sana’a towards Yanbu, they’re 700 miles (1100km) away from each other,
So, MRBMs for sure.

View image on Twitter

Crucially, earlier in the day US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrived in Saudi Arabia where he met with King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to discuss deterring Iran’s regional ambitions.

SPAENG

@Spa_Eng

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Receives U.S. Secretary of State.

View image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on Twitter

Pompeo had reportedly just wrapped up his last meeting of the night with MbS when the attack happened.

Liz Sly

@LizSly

The ballistic missiles fired tonight at Saudi, presumably from Yemen, came as Pompeo visits Riyadh. They were intercepted over Yanbu shortly after he wrapped up dinner with MBS. Missile defense was on the agenda. https://www.spa.gov.sa/2037391

No doubt, the US will take the timing of the launch to be a deliberate message and will likely ultimately point the finger at Tehran.

END

LIBYA/USA

USA ambassador on its first visit to Libya meets Hafter in Benghazi and does not go to Tripoli.  The USA is backing Hafter

(zerohedge)

In First Visit To Libya, US Ambassador Meets Only With Haftar While Ignoring Tripoli

This is hugely revealing of where Washington stands on the now nine year old Libya conflict, which has recently seen former CIA asset Gen. Khalifa Haftar attempt to force the country under his control by his months-long assault on the capital of Tripoli.

US Ambassador to Libya Richard Norland, who had set up the embassy outside the country in neighboring Tunisia, for the first time this week visited the war-torn country which was thrown into chaos by the 2011 US-NATO intervention against Gaddafi.

Ambassador Norland met only with Gen. Haftar, head of the Libyan National Army (LNA), in Benghazi and reportedly didn’t even go to Tripoli.

 

US Ambassador to Libya Richard Norland met with Khalifa Hafter this week. Image via Libya Review. 

On paper at least, Washington still officially supports the UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) in Tripoli under Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj. However, starting last April President Trump caught many in his own administration off guard when he unexpectedly thanked the renegade general for “securing Libya’s oil resources” at a moment he attempted to wrest control of the country from the GNA in Tripoli.

Turkey and other backers of Tripoli will no doubt take note. Erdogan is the GNA and Serraj’s main military backer, and on Wednesday vowed that “if international efforts do not lead to a solution, we will support the reconciliation government until it controls the whole country.” He further stressed that “the European Union has no authority to make a decision on Libya,” after the EU announced it would send warships to enforce a UN arms embargo on the country.

A US embassy statement claimed Norland met with Hafter as part of ongoing efforts to secure a ceasefire and ‘‘to reaffirm the importance of a negotiated settlement’’.

Libya Review@LibyaReview

U.S. Ambassador to Libya Richard Norland meets LNA General Commander Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar in Al-Rajma, Benghazi.

View image on Twitter

It said that the Ambassador ‘‘noted General Haftar’s stated commitment to a permanent ceasefire and reiterated the commitment of the Berlin participants to de-escalation, the arms embargo, and a political solution to the conflict’’.

But perhaps most telling is that Norland has yet to even set a date to meet with Prime Minister Serraj, only saying it would happen “as soon as security conditions permit”.

END

6.Global Issues

AUSTRALIA//THE GLOBE

We continue to see global crop failures.  Australia is going to have its worst harvest ever recorded

(Michael Snyder)

 

Global Crop Failures Continue: In Australia This Is Going To Be The Worst Harvest Ever Recorded

Authored by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog,

Global food production is being hit from seemingly every side.  Thanks to absolutely crazy weather patterns, giant locust armies in Africa and the Middle East, and an unprecedented outbreak of African Swine Fever in China, a lot less food is being produced around the world than originally anticipated.  Even during the best of years we really struggle to feed everyone on the planet, and so a lot of people are wondering what is going to happen as global food supplies become tighter and tighter.  The mainstream media in the United States is so obsessed with politics right now that they haven’t been paying much attention to this emerging crisis, but the truth is that this growing nightmare is only going to intensify in the months ahead.

In Australia, conditions have been extremely hot and extremely dry, and that helped to fuel the horrific wildfires that we recently witnessed.

And everyone knew that agricultural production in Australia was going to be disappointing this year, but it turns out that it is actually going to be the worst ever recorded

Australia’s hottest and driest year on record has slashed crop production, with summer output expected to fall to the lowest levels on record, according to official projections released Tuesday.

The country’s agriculture department said it expects production of crops like sorghum, cotton and rice to fall 66 percent — the lowest levels since records began in 1980-81.

The continent of Australia is considered to be one of the breadbaskets of the world.  According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, in 2018/19 Australia exported over 9 million tons of wheat to the rest of the world.

But thanks to relentless crop failures, Australia has started to import wheat, and that is likely to continue for the foreseeable future.

So instead of helping to feed the rest of the world, Australia is now relying on the rest of us to help feed them.

And what is happening this year didn’t just barely break the old records.  In fact, one senior economist says that this will be the worst summer crop production the country has ever seen “by a large margin”

“It is the lowest summer crop production in this period by a large margin,” Peter Collins, a senior economist with the department’s statistical body ABARES told AFP.

Of course if the rest of the world was doing great we could certainly survive a downturn in Australia.

Unfortunately, that is definitely not the case.

Right now, billions upon billions of locusts are voraciously devouring farms in eastern Africa and the Middle East.  As I detailed the other day, giant armies of locusts the size of large cities are traveling up to 100 miles per day as they search for food.  When they descend on a farm, all the crops can be consumed literally within 30 seconds.  It is a nightmare of epic proportions, and UN officials are telling us that this crisis is only going to get worse over the next couple of months.

In Uganda, the army has been called out to help fight this locust plague, but it is making very little difference

Under a warm morning sun scores of weary soldiers stare as millions of yellow locusts rise into the northern Ugandan sky, despite hours spent spraying vegetation with chemicals in an attempt to kill them.

From the tops of shea trees, fields of pea plants and tall grass savanna, the insects rise in a hypnotic murmuration, disappearing quickly to wreak devastation elsewhere.

The most effective way of fighting these locust swarms is to spray insecticide on them from the air, but even that only produces very limited results.

However, at least it is better than doing nothing.

The UN is trying to raise a lot more money to get more planes into the air, because if nothing is done the number of locusts “could grow up to 500 times by June”

The U.N. has said $76 million is needed immediately. On Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo during a visit to Ethiopia said the U.S. would donate another $8 million to the effort. That follows an earlier $800,000.

The number of overall locusts could grow up to 500 times by June, when drier weather begins, experts have said. Until then, the fear is that more rains in the coming weeks will bring fresh vegetation to feed a new generation of the voracious insects.

Overall, these locusts are affecting nations “with a combined population of nearly 2 billion”, and the amount of food that these locusts are destroying is unprecedented.

Meanwhile, China has been dealing with the worst outbreak of African Swine Fever in history.

African Swine Fever does not affect humans, but it sweeps through herds of pigs like wildfire.  There is no vaccine, there is no cure, and once African Swine Fever starts infecting pigs in a certain area the only thing that can be done is to kill the rest of the pigs to keep it from spreading anywhere else.

Unfortunately, China has not been able to get this outbreak under control, and the losses have been staggering.

According to the New York Times, the number of pigs that have been wiped out in China already is equivalent to “nearly one-quarter of all the world’s pigs”…

The disease was first reported in Shenyang, Liaoning Province, in early August 2018. By the end of August 2019, the entire pig population of China had dropped by about 40 percent. China accounted for more than half of the global pig population in 2018, and the epidemic there alone has killed nearly one-quarter of all the world’s pigs.

But of course China is not the only one dealing with African Swine Fever.

In fact, cases of African Swine Fever have now been identified “in 50 countries”, and U.S. pig farmers are deathly afraid of what would happen if this disease starts spreading here.

As a result of this crisis, pork prices in China have gone through the roof, and many families are no longer able to eat pork at all.

Never before in the modern era have we seen so many major threats to global food production emerge simultaneously.

There are more than 7 billion people living on our planet today, and we need to be able to grow enough food to feed everyone.

If we aren’t able to do that, food prices will start to get really high, and people in the poorest areas simply will not have enough food to feed their families.

END
DIAMOND INDUSTRY/DE BEERS
We now witness the diamond industry in trouble as demand falls off a cliff
(zerohedge)

Diamond Crisis – De Beers Records Lowest Profits Since 2009 

De Beers Group reported the worst set of earnings in more than a decade. The international corporation with diamond exploration, diamond mining, diamond retail, and diamond trading segments across the world, has warned the diamond industry is headed for a crisis.

Worldwide global jewelry markets have been pinched by a global slowdown, trade wars, and a virus outbreak, crimping discretionary income among consumers.

The extent of the diamond crisis became more evident on Thursday when De Beers reported profits for 2019, crashed by 50%, now below levels that were last seen since 2009!

Demand woes and supply chain issues of oversupply conditions weighed on prices in the last several years, leading to declining profitability for De Beers.

Mark Cutifani, CEO of Anglo-American Plc, which controls De Beers, said a global turnaround was nearing for the industry, then the virus outbreak in China delayed the rebalancing.

“There aren’t as many people walking around jewelry shops in China. In Hong Kong, there are virtually none,” Cutifani said. “It’ll be a couple of months before we have a better picture.”

We’ve highlighted several factors for why diamond demand has plunged in the last several years. First, the trade war between the US and China led to stock market volatility and uncertainties in regional economies in the East and West hemispheres. This led to a slowdown in world trade growth, especially in mainland China. Less demand from mainland China was visible in Hong Kong in 2018 and 2019. When riots broke out in Hong Kong in the summer of 2019, Mainlanders avoided Hong Kong altogether, crushing the jewelry industry even more.

At the same time, midstream inventory was increasing in North America as US’ bricks and mortar’ retail outlets closed. US jewelry sales have declined in the last several years due mostly to highly indebted consumers, leveraged up to their eyeballs in auto debt, credit cards, and student loans that have limited their economic mobility.

On top of this all, the global economy began to slow in late 2017, central banks panicked in 2018/19, unleashed dozens of rate cuts, and printed trillions of dollars to stabilize the global economy. Nothing seemed to work heading into 2020 – then Covid-19 outbreak formed in China, now spreading across the world. Could mean the diamond industry is headed for a crash.

In the face of oversupplied conditions and weak consumer demand, De Beers has offered concessions to its wholesalers and slashed prices.

“I’m actually very proud of what De Beers did in 2019,” said De Beers CEO Bruce Cleaver.

“It was not an easy year. We led an industry. We spent a lot of time speaking to customers, to bankers and to retailers to give them confidence that De Beers thinks there’s a great future here.”

To summarize, weak consumer demand in North America, collapsing demand in China and Hong Kong, oversupplied conditions, and a global economy that continues to decelerate, this only means one thing: The diamond industry is headed for a crash.

END

CORONAVIRUS/CHARACTERISTICS
A MUST READ...
(Gail Tverberg/Our Finite World)

Easily Overlooked Issues Regarding COVID-19

Authored by Gail Tverberg via Our Finite World,

We read a lot in the news about the new Wuhan coronavirus and the illness it causes (COVID-19), but some important points often get left out.

[1] COVID-19 is incredibly contagious.

COVID-19 transmits extremely easily from person to person. Interpersonal contact doesn’t need to be very long; a taxi driver can get the virus from a passenger, for example. The virus may be transmissible even before an infected person develops symptoms. It may also be transmissible for a few days after a person seems to be over the virus; it is possible to get positive virus tests, even after symptoms disappear. Some people may have the disease, but never show symptoms.

[2] The virus likely remains active on inanimate surfaces such as paper, plastic, or metal for many days.

There haven’t been tests on the COVID-19 virus per se, but studies on similar viruses suggest that human pathogens may remain infectious for up to eight days. Some viruses that only infect animals can survive for more than 28 days. China is reported to be destroying paper currency from the hardest hit area, because people do not want to accept money which may have viruses on it. Clearly, surfaces in airplanes, trains and buses may also harbor viruses, long after a passenger with the virus has left, unless they have been thoroughly wiped down with disinfectant.

[3] Given Issues [1] and [2], about the only way to avoid spreading COVID-19 seems to be geographic isolation. 

With all of today’s travel, geographic isolation doesn’t work very well in practice. People need food and medical supplies. They need to keep basic services such as electricity and garbage collection operating. Suppliers of food and other services need to come and leave the area and that tends to spread COVID-19. Also, the longer a geographic area is isolated, the larger the percentage of the people within the area that is likely to get COVID-19. The problem is that the people need to have contact with others in the area for purposes such as buying food, and that tends to spread the disease.

[4] The real story regarding the number of deaths and illnesses seems to be far worse than the story China is telling its own people and the world.

The real story seems to be that the number of deaths is far greater than the number reported–perhaps 10 times as high as being reported. The number of illnesses is also much higher. At one point, facilities doing cremations in the Wuhan area were reported to be doing four to five times the normal number of cremations. Some of the bodies in the Wuhan area now need to be sent to other areas of China because there is not enough local cremation capacity.

China doesn’t dare tell its people how bad the situation really is, for fear of panic. They want to tell a story of being in control and handling the situation well. The news media in the West repeat

the stories that the government-controlled publications of China provide, even though they seem to present a much more favorable situation than really seems to be the case.

[5] Our ability to identify who has the new coronavirus is poor.

While there is a test for the coronavirus, it costs hundreds of dollars to administer. Even with this high cost, the results of the tests aren’t very reliable. The test tends to produce many false negatives. The virus may be present somewhere inside the person being tested, but not in the areas touched by swabs of the throat and nose.

[6] Some people get much more severe symptoms from COVID-19 than others.

Most people, perhaps 80% of people, seem to get a fairly light form of the COVID-19 illness. Groups that seem particularly prone to adverse outcomes include the elderly, smokers, those who are obese, and those with high blood pressure, diabetes, or poor immune systems. Males seem to have worse outcomes than females.

Strangely enough, people with East Asian ancestry (Chinese, Japanese, or Vietnamese) may have a higher risk of adverse outcomes than those of European or African ancestry. One of the things that is targeted by the disease is the ACE2 receptor. The 1000 Genome Project studied expected differences in ACE2 receptors among various groups. Based on this analysis, some researchers predict that those of European or African ancestry will tend to get lighter forms of the disease.

Figure 1. Chart from Coronavirus risk for Asians, Africans, Caucasians revealed.

Bolstering this view is the fact that the SARS, which also tends to target the ACE2 receptor, tended to stay primarily in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Singapore. While there were cases elsewhere, they tended to have few deaths.

[7] China has been using geographical quarantine to try to hold down the number of COVID-19 cases. The danger with such a quarantine is that once the economy is down, it is very difficult to come back to the pre-quarantine state.

Data shows that China’s economy is not reopening quickly after the extended New Year holiday finished.

Figure 2. China daily passenger flows, relative to Chinese New Year. Amounts are now down more than 80% and have not increased, even as some businesses are theoretically reopening. Chart by ANZ, copied by WSJ Daily Shot Feb. 17, 2020.

Figure 3. China property transactions, before and after Chinese New Year. Chart by Goldman Sachs. Reprinted by WSJ Daily Shot, Feb. 17, 2020.

All businesses will be adversely affected by a lack of sales if they need to continue to pay overhead expenses. Small and medium-sized business will be especially adversely affected. Bloomberg reports that if a shutdown lasts for three months, there is a substantial chance that these businesses will run through their savings and fail. Thus, these businesses may be permanently lost if the economy is down for several months.

Also, restarting after a shut-down is more difficult than it might appear. Take, for example, a mother who wants to go back to work. She will likely need:

  • Public transportation to be operating, so she has a way to get to work;
  • School to be open, so she doesn’t need to worry about her child while she is at work;
  • Masks to be available, so that she and her child can comply with requirements to wear them;
  • Stores providing necessities such as food to be open, or she may be too hungry to work

If anything is missing, the mother is likely not to go back to work. Required masks seem to be a problem right now, but other pieces could be missing as well.

Businesses, too, need a full range of workers to restart their operations. If the inspector doing the final inspection is not available, the business may not really be able to ship finished products, even if most of the workers are back.

[8] A shutdown of as little as three months is likely to be damaging to the world economy.

Multiple things are likely to go wrong:

(a) Commodity prices are likely to fall steeply, because of low demand from China. Oil prices, in particular, are likely to fall steeply, perhaps to $30 to $35 per barrel. Besides cutbacks in oil demand from China, there is the issue of a general reduction in long distance travel, because of fear of traveling with other passengers with COVID-19.

(b) US businesses, such as Apple, will find their supply chains broken. They won’t know when, and if, they can ship products.

(c) Debt defaults are likely to become more common, especially in China. The longer the slowdown/shutdown lasts, the greater the extent to which debt defaults are likely to spread around the world.

(d) The world economy is likely to be pushed into recession, without an easy way to get out again.

[9] The longer the shutdown lasts, the more likely there is to be a major collapse of the Chinese economy. 

In the event of a long-term shutdown, it would seem likely that, at a minimum, a new leader would take over. In fact, there would seem to be a significant chance of major changes within the economy. For example, the provinces of China that are able to restart might attempt to restart, leaving the more damaged areas behind. In such a case, instead of having a single Chinese government to deal with, there might be multiple governmental units to deal with.

Each governmental unit might consist of a few provinces trying to provide services such as they are able, without the benefit of the parts of the economy that are still shut down. Each governmental unit might have its own currency. If this should happen, China will be able to provide far fewer goods and services than it has in the recent past.

[10] Planners everywhere have been guilty of “putting too many eggs in one basket.”

Planners today look for efficiency. For example, placing a large share of the world’s industry in China looks like it is an efficient approach. Unfortunately, we are asking for trouble if the Chinese economy hits a bump in the road. Using just-in-time supply lines looks like a good idea as well, but if a major supplier cannot provide parts for a while, then having inventory on hand would have been a better approach.

If we want systems to be sustainable, they really need a lot of redundancy. Redundant systems are not as efficient, but they are much more likely to sustainable through difficult times. There is a recent article in Nature that talks about this issue. One of the things it says is,

A system with a single cycle is the most unstable because the deletion of any cycle-node or link breaks the sustaining feedback mechanism.

“A system with a single cycle” is basically similar to “putting all of our eggs in one basket.” “Deletion of any cycle-node or link” is something like China running into coronavirus problems. We probably need a world economy that consists of many nearly separate local economies to be certain of long-term world economy stability. Alternatively, we need a great deal of redundancy built into our systems. For example, we need large inventories to work around the possibility of missing contributions from one country, in the case of a problem such as a major epidemic.

Conclusion

The world economy may become very different, simply because of COVID-19. The new virus doesn’t even need to directly affect the rest of the world very much to create a problem. The United States, Europe, and the rest of the world are very much dependent on the continued operation of China. The world economy has effectively put way too many eggs in one basket, and this basket is not now functioning as expected.

If China is barely producing anything for world markets, the rest of the world will suddenly discover that long supply chains weren’t such a good idea. There will be a big scramble to try to fill in the missing pieces of supply chains, but many goods are likely to be less available. We may discover quickly how much we depend upon China for everything from shoes to automobiles to furniture to electronics. World carbon dioxide emissions are likely to fall dramatically because of China’s problems, but will the accompanying issues be ones that the world economy can tolerate?

The thing that is ironic is that it is possible that the West’s fear of the new coronavirus may be overblown–we really won’t know what the impact will be with respect to people of European or of African descent until we have had a better chance to examine how the virus affects different populations. The next few weeks and months are likely to be quite instructive. For example, how will the Americans and Australians who caught COVID-19 on the cruise ships fare? What will the health outcomes be of non-Asians being brought back from Wuhan to their native countries on special planes?

END

WHO TALLY:

The World Health Organization said Friday that there are 76,767 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 2,247 deaths, marking another day in which the number of new cases worldwide has slowed. In early February, the number of new cases reported each day was rising by at least 3,000. There are 1,019 new cases worldwide, 100 of which are in South Korea, which has seen a large uptick in cases in recent days. There are now 204 confirmed cases in South Korea. There are at least 34 cases in the U.S. that have been confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including 21 people who have been repatriated from China and the Diamond Princess cruise ship. Thirteen additional cases have been confirmed by CDC, including a new case that was confirmed by California’s Humboldt County health department on Thursday. The Diamond Princess, which docked at a port in Yokohama, Japan, has reported a total of 634 cases and 2 deaths. COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus that was first diagnosed in humans in December in Wuhan, China. The outbreak has largely shut down Hubei Province, home to Wuhan, and slowed or halted factory production and consumer spending in China.

END

7. OIL ISSUES

 

8 EMERGING MARKET ISSUES

ARGENTINA/CREDITORS/IMF/DEFAULT

Bondholders are going to take a huge hit on this one.  Serve them right for investing in this garbage

(London’s Financial Times)

and special thanks to Robert H for sending this to us

https://www.ft.com/content/5d3d1430-53f5-11ea-8841-482eed0038b1

Investors brace for losses in Argentina debt talks

Creditors prepare for tough negotiations after IMF calls on them to share the pain

FILE PHOTO: IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva and Argentina's Economy Minister Martin Guzman attend a conference hosted by the Vatican on economic solidarity, at the Vatican, February 5, 2020. REUTERS/Remo Casilli/File Photo
IMF managing director Kristalina Georgieva with Argentina’s economy minister Martín Guzmán in Rome earlier this month © Reuters

Investors are braced for acrimonious negotiations with Argentina and a possible default after the IMF backed a big haircut for creditors without urging the country to implement austerity measures.

Bondholders were alarmed when the IMF failed to demand that Argentina rein in its budget deficit. They feared that the fund was siding with President Alberto Fernández, whose government has insisted that it will only reach a balanced budget by 2023, with no reduction this year.

“The IMF is being too lenient,” said one international investor, who fears that the fund will not support private creditors’ attempts to convince Argentina to reach a “more stable fiscal position” that would enable debts to be repaid. “The only way we have left is by not participating in a debt deal.”

The IMF — which has lent Argentina $44bn as part of a record-setting $57bn bailout since a currency crisis in 2018 — backed Buenos Aires on Wednesday in a statement that deemed the country’s $100bn of foreign debt to be unpayable.

Although IMF officials had earlier insisted that the agency was legally prohibited from allowing a haircut on the money it is owed by Argentina, in response to demands by local authorities, it called for a “definitive” debt restructuring that would entail a “meaningful” haircut on private creditors’ bonds.

“How many times do [investors] need to be told? They were told by [Joseph] Stiglitz that they were going to be disappointed, and the market said we don’t believe you,” said another international portfolio manager, referring to the Nobel laureate close to Argentina’s economy minister Martín Guzmán who warned recently that “significant haircuts” would be required.

“Then they were told by Fernández and Guzmán that they were going to be disappointed, and the bonds traded down just for one day and then went back up. And now this.”

Even so, the fund said at the end of what it called “very productive” week-long talks with government officials in Buenos Aires that it wanted a more detailed economic plan that explained how Argentina intended to repay its creditors, who have also been clamouring for clearer plans from the government. The statement also urged authorities to make a greater effort to reduce one of the world’s highest inflation rates.

“We are not surprised by the statement from the IMF but would have welcomed more analytical data . . . to see what gaps exist and how creditors can help bridge such gaps,” said Hans Humes, chief executive officer of Greylock Capital, which is leading one of the bondholder groups. “I think private creditors are willing to make concessions in the same fashion as the IMF.”

Mr Humes urged the government to hire a financial adviser to move forward with formal negotiations. Lazard and Rothschild & Co are among the firms under consideration by the government, according to people familiar with the matter.

“Argentina is not anywhere close to the situation as Greece was or frankly where Argentina was in 2001,” added Mr Humes. He noted that in the 2012 Greek restructuring — which was one of the largest in the history of sovereign debt crises — creditors accepted a 53.5 per cent haircut or loss on the face value of their debt. “It will only be if any of the stakeholders . . . mismanage the process.”

Several groups have formed in recent months in anticipation of a debt restructuring that Mr Guzmán has indicated he wants to complete by March 31. Greylock, T Rowe Price and GMO are among members of one group, while BlackRock, Fidelity and Pimco have co-ordinated their efforts with two other firms, according to people familiar with the matter.

A group advised by Dennis Hranitzky at law firm Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan has also taken shape, according to people who spoke under the condition of anonymity, with hedge funds Monarch Alternative Capital and HBK Capital Management among roughly 20 other funds involved.

“Ultimately, whether or not Argentina defaults is going to be a political decision. The debt can be restructured easily,” said a senior official from the previous Argentine government. “The question is whether they do that, or whether they decide that even if they do, they won’t recover market access anyway, as some argue — so it would be better to default and not have to pay anything.”

 

END

 

 

 

Your early morning currency/gold and silver pricing/Asian and European bourse movements/ and interest rate settings FRIDAY morning 7:00 AM….

Euro/USA 1.1219 DOWN .0008 REACTING TO MERKEL’S FAILED COALITION/ REACTING TO +GERMAN ELECTION WHERE ALT RIGHT PARTY ENTERS THE BUNDESTAG/ huge Deutsche bank problems ///ITALIAN CHAOS /AND NOW ECB TAPERING BOND PURCHASES/JAPAN TAPERING BOND PURCHASES /USA RISING INTEREST RATES /FLOODING/EUROPE BOURSES /MIXED

 

 

USA/JAPAN YEN 107.85 DOWN 0.074 (Abe’s new negative interest rate (NIRP), a total DISASTER/NOW TARGETS INTEREST RATE AT .11% AS IT WILL BUY UNLIMITED BONDS TO GETS TO THAT LEVEL…

GBP/USA 1.2485   DOWN   0.0052  (Brexit March 29/ 2019/ARTICLE 50 SIGNED/BREXIT FEES WILL BE CAPPED/BREXIT EXTENDED TO OCT 31/2019//

USA/CAN 1.3059 UP .0005 CANADA WORRIED ABOUT TRADE WITH THE USA WITH TRUMP ELECTION/ITALIAN EXIT AND GREXIT FROM EU/(TRUMP INITIATES LUMBER TARIFFS ON CANADA/CANADA HAS A HUGE HOUSEHOLD DEBT/GDP PROBLEM)

Early THIS  FRIDAY morning in Europe, the Euro FELL BY 8 basis points, trading now ABOVE the important 1.08 level FALLING to 1.1219 Last night Shanghai COMPOSITE CLOSED UP 9.52 POINTS OR 0.31% 

 

//Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 300.75 POINTS OR 1.09%

/AUSTRALIA CLOSED DOWN 0,34%// EUROPEAN BOURSES ALL RED

 

Trading from Europe and Asia

EUROPEAN BOURSES ALL MRED 

 

 

2/ CHINESE BOURSES / :Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 300.75 POINTS OR 1.09%

 

 

/SHANGHAI CLOSED UP 9.52 POINTS OR 0.31%

 

Australia BOURSE CLOSED DOWN. 34% 

 

 

Nikkei (Japan) CLOSED DOWN 92.41  POINTS OR 0.39%

 

 

 

INDIA’S SENSEX  IN THE RED

Gold very early morning trading: 1633.95

silver:$18.51-

Early FRIDAY morning USA 10 year bond yield:1.50% !!! DOWN 2 IN POINTS from THURSDAY’S night in basis points and it is trading WELL BELOW resistance at 2.27-2.32%.

 

The 30 yr bond yield 1.93 DOWN 3  IN BASIS POINTS from THURSDAY night.

USA dollar index early FRIDAY morning: 99.71 DOWN 16 CENT(S) from  THURSDAY’s close.

This ends early morning numbers FRIDAY MORNING

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx6

And now your closing FRIDAY NUMBERS \1: 00 PM

Portuguese 10 year bond yield: 0.24% DOWN 3 in basis point(s) yield from YESTERDAY/

JAPANESE BOND YIELD: -.06%  DOWN 1   BASIS POINTS from YESTERDAY/JAPAN losing control of its yield curve/56

SPANISH 10 YR BOND YIELD: 0.23%//DOWN 1 in basis point yield from yesterday.

ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD:0.91 DOWN 1 points in basis points yield from yesterday./

 

 

the Italian 10 yr bond yield is trading 68 points higher than Spain.

 

GERMAN 10 YR BOND YIELD: FALLS TO –.43% IN BASIS POINTS ON THE DAY//

THE IMPORTANT SPREAD BETWEEN ITALIAN 10 YR BOND AND GERMAN 10 YEAR BOND IS 1.35% AND NOW ABOVE THE  THE 3.00% LEVEL WHICH WILL IMPLODE THE ENTIRE ITALIAN BANKING SYSTEM. AT 4% SPREAD THERE WILL BE A HUGE BANK RUN…

 

END

IMPORTANT CURRENCY CLOSES FOR FRIDAY

Closing currency crosses for FRIDAY night/USA DOLLAR INDEX/USA 10 YR BOND YIELD/1:00 PM

Euro/USA 1.0859  up     .0007 or 7 basis points

USA/Japan: 111.72 DOWN .252 OR YEN UP 25  basis points/

Great Britain/USA 1.2472 UP .0092 POUND UP 92  BASIS POINTS)

Canadian dollar UP 49 basis points to 1.3212

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

The USA/Yuan,CNY: AT 7.0271    ON SHORE  (DOWN)..GETTING DANGEROUS

THE USA/YUAN OFFSHORE:  7.0368  (YUAN DOWN)..GETTING REALLY DANGEROUS

TURKISH LIRA:  6.0953 EXTREMELY DANGEROUS LEVEL/DEATH WISH.

the 10 yr Japanese bond yield closed at -.06%

 

Your closing 10 yr US bond yield DOWN 4 IN basis points from THURSDAY at 1.48 % //trading well ABOVE the resistance level of 2.27-2.32%) very problematic USA 30 yr bond yield: 1.92 DOWN 4 in basis points on the day

Your closing USA dollar index, 99.29 DOWN 57  CENT(S) ON THE DAY/1.00 PM/

 

Your closing bourses for Europe and the Dow along with the USA dollar index closing and interest rates for FRIDAY: 12:00 PM

London: CLOSED DOWN 32.72  0.44%

German Dax :  CLOSED DOWN 84.67 POINTS OR .62%

 

Paris Cac CLOSED DOWN 32.58 POINTS 0.54%

Spain IBEX CLOSED DOWN 44.800 POINTS or 0.45%

Italian MIB: CLOSED DOWN 307.01 POINTS OR 1.22%

 

 

 

 

 

WTI Oil price; 53.36 12:00  PM  EST

Brent Oil: 58.25 12:00 EST

USA /RUSSIAN /   RUBLE RISES:    63.94  THE CROSS LOWER BY 0.22 RUBLES/DOLLAR (RUBLE HIGHER BY 22 BASIS PTS)

 

TODAY THE GERMAN YIELD FALLS  TO –.43 FOR THE 10 YR BOND 1.00 PM EST EST

END

 

This ends the stock indices, oil price, currency crosses and interest rate closes for today 4:30 PM

Closing Price for Oil, 4:00 pm/and 10 year USA interest rate:

WTI CRUDE OIL PRICE 4:30 PM :  53.55//

 

 

BRENT :  58.36

USA 10 YR BOND YIELD: … 1.46…down 5 basis points…

 

 

 

USA 30 YR BOND YIELD: 1.91..down 5 basis points..

 

 

 

 

 

EURO/USA 1.0848 ( UP 61   BASIS POINTS)

USA/JAPANESE YEN:111.59 DOWN .377 (YEN UP 38 BASIS POINTS/..

 

 

USA DOLLAR INDEX: 99.32 DOWN 55 cent(s)/

The British pound at 4 pm   Britain Pound/USA:1.2959 UP 79  POINTS

 

the Turkish lira close: 6.0921

 

 

the Russian rouble 64.03   UP 0.14 Roubles against the uSA dollar.( UP 14 BASIS POINTS)

Canadian dollar:  1.3218 UP 43 BASIS pts

USA/CHINESE YUAN (CNY) :  7.0271  (ONSHORE)/

 

 

USA/CHINESE YUAN(CNH): 7.0373 (OFFSHORE)

 

German 10 yr bond yield at 5 pm: ,-0.43%

 

The Dow closed DOWN 227.51 POINTS OR 0.78%

 

NASDAQ closed DOWN 174.38 POINTS OR 1.79%

 


VOLATILITY INDEX:  17.64 CLOSED UP 2.08

LIBOR 3 MONTH DURATION: 1.682%//libor dropping like a stone

 

USA trading today in Graph Form

Schizophrenic Stocks End Near Record Highs As Virus Fears Send Yields To All-Time Lows

Yeah, that just happened…

Stocks hover near record highs, bonds crash to all-time lows, and gold is exploding higher…

Source: Bloomberg

As it is becoming more and more obvious that investors in stocks have entirely lost contact with reality since the virus took hold…

Source: Bloomberg

Especially the funny-mentals…

Source: Bloomberg

The ‘hope’-filled gap between ‘soft’ survey data rising and ‘hard’ real economic data slumping has surged to 16 month highs… until this morning’s carnage in PMIs…

Source: Bloomberg

Year-to-date, gold is the biggest winner…

Source: Bloomberg

Chinese stocks soared higher this week…

Source: Bloomberg

European stocks were broadly lower with UK’s FTSE managing to scramble back into the green for the week…

Source: Bloomberg

In the US, only Trannies managed to cling to gains as Nasdaq went from outperformer to biggest loser…

Dow ended the week back below 29k…

As @Sentimentrader noted, NASDAQ 100’s 20 day moving average has gone up 88 days in a row, THE MOST EXTREME IN HISTORY.

 

Similar streaks always ended with SHARP corrections over the next month.

Cyclicals notably underperformed…

Source: Bloomberg

Momentum was hit hard midweek but stabilized…

Source: Bloomberg

FANG stocks suffered their worst day since Mid-October…

Source: Bloomberg

As global liquidity has sent global stock prices to higher and higher record highs, it has also sparked more and more buying in global bonds (yields inverted in chart). Critically, as investors recognize the growth/inflation that was so hoped for is evaporating, global liquidity suggests the global average sovereign bond yield should be drastically lower… at ZERO!!

Source: Bloomberg

US Treasury yields extended their collapse today ending a major weekly plunge…

Source: Bloomberg

30Y and 5Y yields hit new record lows today, 10Y and 2Y were just shy of their record lows…

Source: Bloomberg

The 30Y Yield hit 1.8840% at today’s lows (the previous intraday low was 1.9039% on 8/28/19)…

Source: Bloomberg

The yield curve continued to collapse, falling to its most inverted since October…

Source: Bloomberg

The market is now demanding almost 2 full rate-cuts by end-2020… or else!

Source: Bloomberg

The dollar was clubbed like a baby seal today – worst day since 12/27, after 4 straight up…

Source: Bloomberg

Cryptos were all lower on the week…

Source: Bloomberg

Commodities were all higher on the week (copper barely) with PMs leading…

Source: Bloomberg

WTI managed to get back above $54 briefly but faded back…

Source: Bloomberg

This is the best start to a year for gold since 2016. Today was the best day for gold since mid-August (gold is up 10 of the last 13 days)…

Source: Bloomberg

Silver is also surging, back above $18.50…

Source: Bloomberg

Gold is hitting record highs in many global currencies…

Source: Bloomberg

The dollar is holding up against the rest of global fiat but collapsing against hard assets!!

Source: Bloomberg

Finally, there’s this… that Nasdaq 10,000 Y2K analog is spookily accurate still…

Source: Bloomberg

Stock markets seem unable to grasp that the liquidity spigot may not be open forever…

Source: Bloomberg

Maybe Bernie’s rise will be the breaking point for stocks?

Source: Bloomberg

For now the market remains convinced that Trump will win…

Source: Bloomberg

And now your more important USA stories which will influence the price of gold/silver

MARKET TRADING//USA

a)Market trading/LAST NIGHT/USA

 

b)MARKET TRADING/USA/AFTERNOON

ii)Market data/USA

THIS IS HUGE: Treasury yields plunge as the USA PMI collapses into contraction.  This is before the big onset on the Covid 19 supply shock

(zerohedge)

Treasury Yields Plunge To Record Lows As US PMI Collapses Into Contraction

Markit’s US Manufacturing bucked the surprising surge in ISM Manufacturing in January and preliminary February data was expected to confirm this slowing trend (with Services steadily expanding).

  • U.S. Feb. Services Flash PMI 49.4; Est. 53.4
  • U.S. Feb. Flash Manufacturing PMI 50.8; Est 51.5
  • U.S. Feb. Flash Composite PMI 49.6 vs 53.3

And as the chart shows, while ‘soft’ survey data had been rising, ‘hard’ data – actual economic flows – has been weakening for 4 months, and February appears to have been catch-down time!

Source: Bloomberg

New orders received by private sector firms fell for the first time since data collection began in October 2009. The fractional decline in new business stemmed from weak client demand across the service sector and the slowest rise in manufacturing new order volumes for nine months. Private sector companies continued to struggle to attract foreign client demand as new export orders fell for the second month running.

Finally, we note that the composite output at factories and service providers fell by 3.7 points to 49.6, the lowest level since October 2013, when the U.S. government shut down.

“The deterioration in was in part linked to the coronavirus outbreak, manifesting itself in weakened demand across sectors such as travel and tourism, as well as via falling exports and supply chain disruptions,” IHS Markit economist Chris Williamson said in a statement.

With the exception of the government-shutdown of 2013, US business activity contracted for the first time since the global financial crisis in February. Weakness was primarily seen in the service sector, where the first drop in activity for four years was reported, but manufacturing production also ground almost to a halt due to a near-stalling of orders.

“Total new orders fell for the first time in over a decade. The deterioration in was in part linked to the coronavirus outbreak, manifesting itself in weakened demand across sectors such as travel and tourism, as well as via falling exports and supply chain disruptions. However, companies also reported increased caution in respect to spending due to worries about a wider economic slowdown and uncertainty

The last time PMI crashed here, GDP went negative in Q1 2014 (-1.1%)…

 

And it could have been dramatically worse because, there’s one big glaring global error in all PMIs going forward. As @ClausVistesen exposes under the surface of Germany’s surprisingly solid PMI data.

The composite PMI in Germany fell trivially to 51.1 in February. from 51.2 in January, above the consensus, 50.7.

The coronavirus effect is nowhere to be seen in these data…

There is a catch, though. Markit notes that half of the increase in the manufacturing PMI was attributed slower delivery times.

Normally, such evidence of supply-side tightening is bullish—signalling accelerated activity — but respondents specifically noted that this was related to disruptions in China due to the coronavirus. Specifically:

“The ‘flash’ seasonally adjusted Suppliers’ Delivery Times Index was at 47.0 in February. down from 55.1 in January. A reading below 50 signals deterioration in supplier delivery times. In the calculation of the headline Manufacturing PM!. the supplier delivery times index is inverted.”

In other words, the PMIs appear to be designed so as to import a supply-chain disruption from the coronavirus as a bullish signal. Needless to say: it isn’t! With that in mind, it’s difficult to interpret the evidence of further easing in the rate of contraction and new orders as a good sign. The main risk is that production lines simply grind to a halt, even as new orders keep coming due to disruptions of the supply side.

…It’s ridiculous. Not exactly economists’ finest hours here, building up to the PMIs as if they were the litmus test for all this, and now we can just put them in the bin because of the supply-tightening/headline up effect.

Basically, we need to watch supply-side factors/input price inflation now. The problem is that we have even worse real-time data here than on the demand side.

And just like that – we now know all PMIs for the next few months are utterly useless (and in fact misleading – not necessarily by intent) due to this is inversion of supply chain crises into a bullish signal.

All of which has sent the 30-year US Treasury yield to an all-time record low of 1.89%…

…with stocks less than 1% off record highs!?

 end
Existing home sales slide in January with prices jumping
(zerohedge)

Existing Home Sales Slide In January, Prices Jump As Inventories Slump

Following December’s surprisingly large surge, existing home sales were expected to slow in January and it did but less than expected due to an upward revision to December.

Dec existing home sales was revised from +3.6% to +3.9% MoM which cause the January move to modestly beat expectations but still fell (-1.3% MoM vs -1.8% MoM expected) to a 5.46 million annual rate…

Source: Bloomberg

The median existing-home price for all housing types in January was $266,300, up 6.8% from January 2019 ($249,400), as prices increased in every region. December’s price increase marks 95 straight months of year-over-year gains.

“Mortgage rates have helped with affordability, but it is supply conditions that are driving price growth,” Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economistsaid.

Total housing inventory at the end of January totaled 1.42 million units, up 2.2% from December, but down 10.7% from one year ago (1.59 million).

The housing inventory level for January is the lowest level since 1999. Unsold inventory sits at a 3.1-month supply at the current sales pace, up from the 3.0-month figure recorded in December and down from the 3.8-month figure recorded in January 2019.

Yun finds the outlook for 2020 home sales promising despite the drop in January.

“Existing-home sales are off to a strong start at 5.46 million.” Yun said.

“The trend line for housing starts is increasing and showing steady improvement, which should ultimately lead to more home sales.”

Single-family home sales sat at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 4.85 million in January, down from 4.91 million in December, but up 9.7% from a year ago. The median existing single-family home price was $268,600 in January 2020, up 6.9% from January 2019.

Existing condominium and co-op sales were recorded at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 610,000 units in January, down 1.6% from December but 8.9% higher than a year ago. The median existing condo price was $248,100 in January, an increase of 5.7% from a year ago.

Regional breakdown

Sequentially, January sales only increased in the Midwest, while year-over-year sales are up in each of the four regions. Median home prices in all regions increased from one year ago, with the Northeast region showing the strongest price gain.

  • January 2020 existing-home sales in the Northeast saw no movement, recording an annual rate of 730,000, which is up 7.4% from a year ago. The median price in the Northeast was $312,100, up 11.5% from January 2019.
  • Existing-home sales increased 2.4% in the Midwest to an annual rate of 1.29 million, which is up 8.4% from a year ago. The median price in the Midwest was $200,000, a 5.4% increase from last January.
  • Existing-home sales in the South grew 0.4% to an annual rate of 2.38 million in January, up 11.7% from a year ago. The median price in the South was $229,900, a 6.3% increase from this time last year.
  • Existing-home sales in the West fell 9.4% to an annual rate of 1.06 million in January, an 8.2% increase from a year ago. The median price in the West was $393,800, up 5.2% from January 2019.

And of course, with interest rates crashing to record lows, one would imagine mortgage rate collapses will spark renewed interest in at worst refis, and at best more buying.

Important USA Economic Stories

This will be a big hit for USA taxpayers and it will also add to the total USA debt as authorities plan on a 200 billion student loan forgiveness

(zerohedge)

U.S. Taxpayers Face $200 Billion Bill From Student Loan Forgiveness Plans

The student loan bubble continues to inflate

It’s now a $1.64 trillion problem that has increased over 120% since 2009. Student loan balances equate to 7.6% of GDP. That’s up from 5.1% a decade ago.

Much of the millennial generation has insurmountable student debts that have prevented them from family formation, home buying, and growing savings. This has severely weighed on the economy, but it appears relief could be on the way, paid for by the U.S. taxpayer.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said this week that a $207.4 billion student loan forgiveness program would help Americans who are unable to pay their debt through 2029.

The CBO said borrowers who attend graduate or professional schooling would benefit from the program the most.

The government is expected to forgive $167.1 billion of the total amount, and this includes the original loan amount and unpaid interest for borrowers over the period.

The CBO estimates that the government will forgive $40.3 billion on new loans made from 2020-2029, or about 21% of the original amount.

There are more than 50 million Americans with student loan debt. The CBO estimates that most of the borrowers are stuck in low wage and low skilled jobs with large balances that may never be paid pack. Many of these folks are millennials, stuck in a renting society with absolutely no economic mobility.

The student loan bubble is another imbalance that will correct and end very badly when the next recession strikes, hence why the government has created a new program to fund student debt forgiveness.

Let’s call the program for what it really is: a massive bailout of the millennial generation.

Like all bubbles, this one will eventually pop. And when it does, it will end very badly.

LVD@LVDTrades

what stage of the cycle is this @awealthofcs @michaelbatnick

Embedded video

But in the meantime, some millennials are flipping stocks and making money in “COLLEGE (in class)” to have “NO MORE student loans.”

END

We have been highlighting this to you for the past few months:  the Covid 19 virus will have an immediate impact from supply chain shock.  Deutsche bank outlines how this will be devastating to the USA economy

(zerohedge)

 

US Exposed To Immediate Impact From “Supply-Chain Shock”, Deutsche Says

In the last few weeks, we’ve provided many articles on the evidence of creaking global supply chains fast emerging in China and spreading outwards. Anyone in supply chain management, monitoring the flow of goods and services from China, has to be worried about which regions will be impacted the most (even if the stock market couldn’t care less).

Deutsche Bank’s senior European economist Clemente Delucia and economist Michael Kirker published a note on Thursday titled “The impact of the coronavirus: A supply-chain analysis” identifying the effect of contagion on the rest of the world, mainly focusing on demand and spillover effects into other countries.

The economists constructed a ‘dependency indicator,’ to figure out just how much a country depends on China for the supply of particular imported inputs. It was noted that the more a country depends on China, the more challenging it could be for businesses to find alternative sourcing during a period of supply chain disruptions.

The biggest takeaway from the report is that, surprisingly, the European Union is less directly exposed to a China supply-chain shock than the US, Canada, Japan, and all the major Asian countries (i.e., India, South Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam).

It was determined that in the first wave of supply chain disruptions that “euro-area countries are somewhat less directly dependent on China for intermediate inputs than other major economies in the rest of the world.”

“The euro-area countries have, in general, a dependence indicator below the benchmark. This suggests that euro-area countries have a below-average direct dependence on Chinese imports of intermediate inputs (Figure 2).”

But since China is highly integrated into the global economy, and a supply chain shock would be felt across the world. The second round of disruptions would result in lower world trade growth that would eventually filter back into the European economy.

The US, Japan, Canada, and all the major Asian countries would feel an immediate supply chain shock from China.  

Here’s a chart that maps out lower dependency and higher dependency countries to disruption from China.

end

To summarize, the European Union might escape disruptions from China supply chain shocks in the first round, but ultimately will be affected as global growth would sag. As for the US and Japan, Canada, and all the major Asian countries, well, the disruption will be almost immediate and severe with limited opportunities for companies to find alternative sourcing.

“First of all, our analysis does not take into account non-linearity in the production process. In other words, it does not capture consequences from a stop in production for particular product. It might indicate that given the dependence is smaller, Europe could find it somewhat easier substitute a Chinese product with another. But there is no guarantee this will be the case.”

“Secondly, while our results indicates that the direct impact from supply issues in China could be smaller for the euro area than for other regions in the world, the euro area could be hard-hit by second-round effects. With their higher direct exposure to China, production in other major economies could slow down as a result of disruptions in the supply chain. This not only could cause a shortage in demand for euro-area exports, but it could also impact on the euro-area’s import of intermediate inputs from these other countries (second-round effects). In other words, China has become a relevant player in the world supply chain and production/demand problems in China are spread worldwide through direct and indirect channels.

News flow this week has indeed suggested the virus is spreading outwards, from East to West, and could get a lot worse ex-China into the weekend.

We believe supply chain disruptions ex-China could become more prevalent in the weeks ahead.

The mistake of the World Health Organization (WHO), governments, and global trade organizations to minimize the economic impact (protect stock markets) of the virus was to allow flights, businesses, and trade to remain open with China. This allowed the virus to start spreading across China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

end

Trump Hints At 3rd Ag Bailout, Promises Farmers “Additional Aid” Until Trade Deals “Fully Kick In”

President Trump tweeted a message of support to America’s farmers, pledging to deliver another round of federal bailout money if China, Canada and Mexico fail to immediately satisfy their commitments under their respective trade agreements with the US.

The message arrived in all-caps:

Donald J. Trump

@realDonaldTrump

IF OUR FORMALLY TARGETED FARMERS NEED ADDITIONAL AID UNTIL SUCH TIME AS THE TRADE DEALS WITH CHINA, MEXICO, CANADA AND OTHERS FULLY KICK IN, THAT AID WILL BE PROVIDED BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, PAID FOR OUT OF THE MASSIVE TARIFF MONEY COMING INTO THE USA!

Of course, as many (including us) have noted, American firms are the ones on the hook for the tariffs, and the revenue, while strong, would be nowhere near enough to offset another 11-figure bailout package.

Considering the tweet’s forgiving tone, it looks like this is another classic Trump trade triangulation (where Trump sets the China hawks and pro-trade doves against each other, then stakes out a more moderate path, often via twitter). As we noted earlier, a senior Treasury Department official reportedly told Reuters that the administration is unsympathetic to China’s coronavirus-related troubles, and that it expects Beijing to keep its promise to buy $200 billion in US goods (with a large slug of that slated for ag products) over the next two years.

In essence, this ‘senior official’ was telling Beijing: ‘fuck you, pay me’.

Now, it appears President Trump has decided to soften the message a bit, telling farmers that the federal government will be there to backstop them if China does eventually need a little more time to make good on its commitments, or if the economic blowback is so severe that Mexico and Canada are heavily impacted (which is possible, but then again if that happens Trump might have other problems).

So far, the Trump administration has promised farmers a total of $28 billion in two farm bailouts, with the rest of that money set to be paid by April. Now he’s saying he might do a third if the coronavirus fallout for the global economy is bad enough.

Here’s another thought: As we theorized in our last post, President Trump needs to keep the threat of a trade-deal collapse alive to maintain leverage over China and feed expectations that the Fed could deliver another rate hike if things go poorly, which is why a revival of the reflation trade is in reality the biggest threat to the market right now.

So the message was addressed to American farmers, but the subtext was intended for Beijing.

Interestingly enough, the market dropped after the tweet, a sign of just how sensitive investors are becoming to hints of virus-related economic blowback.

end

iv) Swamp commentaries)

crooks!

Wells Fargo Pays $3 Billion To Settle Illicit Conduct Of “Staggering Scope & Duration”

Wells Fargo has agreed to pay $3 billion to settle U.S. investigations into more than a decade of widespread consumer abuses under a deal that lets the scandal-ridden bank avoid criminal charges.

The deal resolves civil and criminal investigations. It includes a so-called deferred prosecution agreement, where the Justice Department files, but doesn’t immediately pursue, criminal charges. It will eventually dismiss them if the bank satisfies the government’s requirements, including its continued cooperation with further government investigations, over the next three years.

The accord also resolves a complaint by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

 

“Our settlement with Wells Fargo, and the $3 billion criminal monetary penalty imposed on the bank, go far beyond ‘the cost of doing business,’” U.S. Attorney Andrew Murray for the Western District of North Carolina said in a statement.

“They are appropriate given the staggering size, scope and duration of Wells Fargo’s illicit conduct.”

All of which means – nobody goes to jail!

While today’s settlement shuts the door on a major portion of the bank’s legal problems related to the fake accounts, a scandal that has claimed two CEOs; it’s hardly the end of the bank’s legal woes. The firm remains under a growth cap imposed by the Federal Reserve. Last month the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced civil charges against eight former senior executives, some of whom settled. And probes into other suspected misconduct in other businesses are continuing.

But, don’t expect anyone to held accountable for any of that either.

end

v) King report/Courtesy of Chris Powell of GATA which includes the major swamp stories.

China’s Hubei province reported there were 115 additional deaths [and 411 new cases] as of Feb. 20, which brought the total number of COVID-19 fatalities in the region to 2,144… The total number of confirmed cases in South Korea is now 104 after 22 new patients were confirmed to have caught the infection, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control & Prevention…

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/21/coronavirus-latest-updates-chinas-hubei-reports-115-additional-deaths.html

Whopping rise in infection at Beijing hospital puts capital on alert

A central Beijing hospital reported 36 novel coronavirus cases as of Thursday, a sharp increase from nine cases from two weeks earlier, leading many to fear a potential explosion of infection numbers in the capital…  https://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1180281.shtml

 

@nytimes: Russia is aiding President Trump in the 2020 election, intelligence officials told lawmakers. Trump complained Democrats might exploit the news… In a February 13 briefing, intelligence officials warned House lawmakers that Russia was interfering in the 2020 campaign to try to get Trump re-elected, 5 people familiar with the matter said [If true, this is a criminal leak.  It might be fake news, or a sting operation to catch criminal leakers.]  https://nyti.ms/3bTBtXr

 

Ex-CIA ops official @BryanDeanWright: Notice an omission here: Nowhere does the NYT say what degree of confidence the IC has in its assessment of likely Russian interference. Without that info & a bipartisan assessment of sources this is a Resistance hit piece designed to inflame Trump Russia passions.

 

@johncardillo: The nytimes and Schiff watched the disaster that was last night’s Dem Debate, and today defaulted to peddling Trump 2020/Russia collusion fantasies again. You seriously can’t make this up.

 

@paulsperry_: The Deep State is replaying the same playbook from 2016 in a preemptive challenge against another Trump victory w sudden new “intelligence” about Putin interfering on his behalf in 2020. They are so transparent. But b/c Repubs haven’t challenged the ICA, why change the playbook?

 

The NYT quotes FBI Director Wray as stating that Russia intends to cause chaos in both parties and ruin trust in US elections.  So, the NYT is effectively executing Putin’s scheme.

 

@CBS_Herridge: Source close to matter tells @CBSNews NSC staffer Kash Patel tapped to serve as senior adviser to Amb. Rick Grenell, acting Intel chief (DNI.) Source said mandate is to “clean house including “top to bottom” review DNI operations that expanded dramatically since 2005.

 

Michael Bloomberg’s campaign implodes onstage in Nevada Democratic debate https://trib.al/eqoOOiY

 

@ElmaAksalic: Michael Bloomberg: “The real winner in the debate last night was Donald Trump… I worry that we may very well be on the way to nominating somebody who cannot win in November.”

@TrumpWarRoom: Joe Biden claimed he can help Democrats win the Senate race in Pennsylvania this year… There’s no Senate race in Pennsylvania this year.

 

WaPo’s Michelle Ye Hee Lee @myhlee: Several donors and fundraisers who were on the Biden/Bloomberg fence are texting me about their disappointment with Bloomberg tonight.  One said when asked about Bloomberg: “An unmitigated disaster. … Bloomberg isn’t the answer, that’s for sure.”

Controversial Judge Jackson sentenced Roger Stone to 40 months but deferred execution of Stone’s sentencing to give him a chance to appeal for a new trial.

 

“At his core, Mr. Stone is an insecure person who craves and recklessly pursues attention,” Jackson said of Stone… [Judge Jackson is a psychologist, too!]

https://www.mediaite.com/news/judge-jackson-tore-apart-roger-stone-before-sentencing-insecure-person-who-craves-attention/

 

@BrookeSingman: U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson agreed w/ senior DOJ leadership that the original sentence proposal for RogerStone was excessive [Vindicates Barr, impugns the 3 prosecutors] –calling that 87-108 month proposal “greater than necessary.”  She sentenced him to 40 months.

 

CBS’s @BillRehkopf: Jackson says Stone knew he could not take the 5th before Congress without hurting the Trump campaign, “so he lied, and then made efforts to make sure the lies were not exposed.”

[Judge Jackson claims she is a mind reader and knows evidence that no one else knows!]

 

@JackPosobiec: Judge Jackson is now criticizing Roger Stone for hurting the government’s ability to discover Russia collusion [Totally inappropriate comment that smacks of conspiracy delusions!]

Judge Jackson just said “Roger Stone was prosecuted for covering up for the President” and sentenced him to 3 and Half years behind bars [an egregiously biased and inappropriate remark!]

Judge Jackson is now using her courtroom in the Roger Stone hearing to publicly criticize President Trump and AG Barr [She should be impeached!]

@johncardillo: Roger Stone’s Judge Amy Berman Jackson claiming that he threatened her and impeded justice is beyond dumb considering she suppressed his 1A rights, he was convicted by a biased jury and she’s sentencing him. This should terrify every American.

 

@Barnes_Law: The same firm that employs key family members of prosecutors in key decision making roles concerning DC corruption cases also is the same firm that sold out @GenFlynn, and also just happens to employ as a key partner: Eric Holder.

 

@paulsperry_: Turns out Eric Holder works with the father of the AUSA who signed the McCabe get-of-jail-free card. Her father and Holder are partners at Covington & Burling LLP in Washington

 

Evidence is increasingly emerging that proves the US criminal justice system is a hot mess.

 

John Bolton Admits Last-Minute Impeachment Leak Was a Publicity Stunt

“People can argue about what I should have said and what I should have done… I will bet you a dollar right here and now my testimony would have made no difference to the ultimate outcome.”…

https://thefederalist.com/2020/02/20/john-bolton-admits-last-minute-impeachment-leak-was-a-publicity-stunt/#.Xk7RmuDBCQ0.twitter

end

Let us wrap up the week with this offering courtesy of Greg Hunter of USAWatchdog

Dem Civil War, Deep State Reveals All, Economic Update

By Greg Hunter On February 21, 2020 In Weekly News Wrap-Ups 3 Comments

The Democrat Party looks like it is having an all-out war—with itself. This Democrat civil war is unlike any in modern history. You have a party that has turned communist/socialist fighting with elite members such as billionaire Michael Bloomberg. This battle for the party of theft and death is just beginning and won’t end well.

The Democrats and Deep State overlords are getting desperate. They are revealing themselves like never before. It was not that long ago that if you mentioned the so-called Deep State, people would think you were a tin foil hat wearing conspiracy nut. Not any longer. It seems all of the nuts are being revealed in the Deep State. This includes revelations of human trafficking that, according to President Trump, is 70% women and children. Thank you Prince Andrew, Jeffery Epstein for all the stories about global human trafficking and sex slaves getting out to the general public.

The China virus news seems it is going from bad to worse every week. No one believes the official stories coming out of China. China’s domestic production of goods has ground to a halt, and now Wall Street is waking up to the fact the money printing at central banks is NOT going to fix the coming global economic disaster hatched in communist China.

Weekly News Wrap-Up.

-END-

 

Join Greg Hunter of USAWatchdog.com as he talks about these stories and more in the Weekly News Wrap-Up.

 

-END-

Well that is all for today

I will see you Monday night.

/however Tuesday night will be delivered on Wednesday

It takes a long time to prepare for each report as I retrieve the comex data

late at night and it is taking a little toll on me

I will be taking a little break for two weeks

however I will provide daily reports but they will not be issued at their regular time and not detailed as in my usual manner

…they will however have all the essentials..

I have to re generate my engines as we are heading into the final stretch against the banks

all the best

h

 

 

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